I commend your enthusiasm and desire for having gathered here to support and protect camp Ashraf. You are here to convince the Iraqi government to cancel the deadline for closure of camp Ashraf on December 31, 2011, so that the UNHCR’s process for refugee status of Ashraf residents can begin as soon as possible. I think this gathering is very important right at the time when United States prepares to receive Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Recently, camp Ashraf residents were attacked and killed. I fully understand that the life of Ashraf residents is at risk and the international community must intervene. I thank you for devoting your time in defending the rights and safety of camp Ashraf residents. I know many of you have friends and relatives in camp Ashraf and I’m sure the U.S. Congress will continue its efforts to help your friends and relatives in camp Ashraf. I thank you so much for your gathering here today, and your commitments to Ashraf residents. I ask you to continue your protests in the U.S. Congress and outside the White House. I believe while Iraq’s prime minister visits America, this is the best opportunity to set this issue at the top of agenda today.
Thank you very much,
Member of U.S. House Armed Services Committee