An Iranian opposition group on Monday asked a federal appeals court to order its removal from the U.S. list of foreign terrorist organizations and says the status is putting its members long exiled in Iraq at risk.  The People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran accused the State Department in a court filing Monday of ignoring a 2010 court order that it reconsider its status as a terrorist group.  The group is also known by its Farsi name, Mujahadin-e-Khalq or MEK. It carried out a series of bombings and assassinations against Iran’s clerical regime in the 1980s and fought alongside Saddam’s forces in the Iran-Iraq war.  But the group says it renounced violence in 2001.

The group asked the State Department to remove it from the terrorist list in 2008, but was rejected and asked the appeals court to overturn the decision.  The appeals court ruled in July 2010 that the State Department violated the group’s due process protections in rejecting its petition.  It allowed the group to remain on the terrorist list while ordering the department to give the group an opportunity to rebut arguments against its removal before making a final decision on its status.

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