Iranian opposition group in Iraq resettled to Albania

September 9, 2016 12:51 PM EDT

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BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The remaining members of an exiled Iranian opposition group based in Iraq for decades left on Friday for resettlement in Albania following several attacks on their camps in recent years.

More than 280 members of the People's Mujahideen Organization of Iran (PMOI) living at Camp Liberty, next to Baghdad International Airport, departed from Iraq, the group said in a statement.

Under a deal brokered by the United States and the United Nations refugee agency, almost 2,000 dissident Iranians have been resettled in nearly a dozen European countries since the start of 2016.

Until a few years ago, PMOI, also known by its Farsi name Mujahideen-e-Khalq Organization (MKO), was listed as a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union.

The group sided with Saddam Hussein during Iraq's war with Iran in the 1980s but fell out of favor with Baghdad after he was toppled by a U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

A rocket attack claimed by a Shi'ite Muslim militia in October killed 23 PMOI members. [nL8N12U24I]

The group has offices in the United States and Europe.

The remaining Iranian dissidents in Iraq, who seek the overthrow of Iran's clerical leadership established by the 1979 Islamic revolution, were disarmed after Saddam's fall and later moved to Camp Liberty.

(This story corrects paragraph 7 to clarify group still has offices in U.S.)

(Reporting by Stephen Kalin; editing by David Stamp)

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