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"Such relief would - despite the PMOI's long history of terrorism - remove an important barrier to the PMOI's ability to operate freely in the United States, and is clearly unwarranted here," the State Department told the court.

Reuters
The Obama administration on Monday urged a U.S. appeals court not to interfere with its review and decision-making process over whether to remove the Iranian dissident group Mujahadin-e Khalq from a U.S. terrorism blacklist.

The group asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to order the State Department to either remove it from the list or require action within a specified period on its request to delist the group.

The State Department urged the court to stay out of the matter, saying it was continuing to evaluate the matter, consulting with the intelligence community and other government agencies and that it had met with representatives of the Mujahadin-e Khalq.

Further, in its reply to the appeals court, the department repeated what Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said last month to U.S. lawmakers: that they were closely watching the group's cooperation in closing its Camp Ashraf base in Iraq.

BAN ON FINANCIAL SUPPORT

Americans are banned from providing financial and other support to any group included on the so-called "Foreign Terrorist Organization" list, and its members or representatives are banned from entering the United States.

Representatives for the group, which has also received support from several former senior U.S. government officials, had urged the court to intervene and force the administration to act or take the step itself of removing the group from the list.

"Such relief would - despite the PMOI's long history of terrorism - remove an important barrier to the PMOI's ability to operate freely in the United States, and is clearly unwarranted here," the State Department told the court.

"Moreover, an order directing the Secretary to act by a particular date is also inappropriate given the highly complex and delicate overall nature of the matter pending before her," it said.

The State Department also warned that court action "would seriously interfere" with its efforts to resolve the Camp Ashraf situation.

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