Reformist cleric Mohsen Kadivar and US-based academic Ahmad Sadri warn of broader dangers. Taking the MEK off the terrorist list, they have written, would "trigger a huge loss of US soft power in Iran, damage Iran's democratic progress, and help Iranian hardliners cement a long-term dictatorship."
Legal cases have seen the MEK removed from terror watch lists on procedural grounds in the UK and European Union in recent years. A decision on the US designation is now imminent; a federal appeals court in Washington last year ruled that the State Dept. had violated the group’s right to due process, because it had not been allowed to contest unclassified information used to justify its designation.
That information, submitted in autumn 2009, disclosed that “the MEK trained females at Camp Ashraf in Iraq to perform suicide attacks in Karbala” – a charge the group called “manifestly implausible” in court. It also included a US intelligence community assessment that the MEK “retains a limited capability and the intent to use violence to achieve its political goals.”
A detailed 2009 report, prepared for the US Department of Defense by the RAND Corp., notes further that the MEK has made "repeated requests ... to have its weapons returned" at Camp Ashraf, the military camp given to the MEK by Saddam Hussein, where 3,400 members remain, disarmed.