BAGHDAD, Sept. 1 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al- Maliki on Sunday ordered forming a committee to investigate the " events" occurred earlier in the day at a camp of an Iranian opposition group in Iraq's eastern province of Diyala, where the group claimed up to 52 people were killed and dozens wounded.
In a statement posted on his website, al-Maliki said the Iraqi government stressed the need to help the country by sending away those who are illegally on Iraqi grounds, while it also confirms its commitment to the safety of whose who are on its territory.
Earlier in the day, Gyorgy Busztin, deputy of the UN special envy to Iraq, "strongly condemns today's tragic events in Camp Ashraf, which reportedly led to the killing and injuring of several camp residents," the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq said in an online statement.
Busztin urged the Iraqi government to provide medical assistance to the injured residents of the camp and to launch a probe into the incident.
"The priority for the Iraqi government is to provide immediate medical assistance to the injured and to ensure their security and safety against any violence from any side," Busztin said.
He also called on the Iraqi government to "quickly set up a board of inquiry to establish the facts and disclose the circumstances surrounding today's events."
Earlier in the day, a local Iraqi media quoted a source from the camp as saying that the Iraqi army backed by Special Weapons And Tactics, raided at dawn Ashraf Camp where members of People's Mujahideen Organization of Iran (PMOI) reside.
The Iraqi troops began the attack by an hour-long mortar barrage before they stormed the partially deserted camp near the provincial capital city of Baquba, some 65 km northeast of Baghdad, the national Iraqi NINA news agency reported.
The report in the morning said 19 people were killed and some 30 wounded in the operation.
For its part, PMOI confirmed the attack on its camp and later in the afternoon put the death toll at 52, including several of its leading figures, and said dozens were wounded, while others were arrested by the Iraqi troops.
"The Iranian resistance calls for immediate dispatch of delegations from the United States and the UN to Ashraf to prevent continuation of massacre and save the lives of the wounded," PMOI said in an online statement.
However, Udai al-Khadran, mayor of the city of Khalis where the camp located, denied such attack and told Xinhua that "I've heard of such news but there is no reports about any operation by the Iraqi forces, and the city hospitals did not receive casualties from the camp."
In late 2011, the Iraqi government and the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq struck a deal to move the camp residents to Baghdad temporarily until the UN High Commissioner for Refugees gets them resettled in a third country.
PMOI, also known as Mujahideen Khalq Organization, is a self- claimed Marxist and Islamic movement. It was founded in 1965 in opposition to the shah of Iran and subsequently fought to oust the Islamic government which took power in the 1979 revolution. The group fled to Iraq in 1986, and set up Ashraf Camp near the Iranian border.
After the PMOI fighters were disarmed following the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the camp remained under the protection of the U. S. military police for five years before the Iraqi government took over the security responsibility.
Ties between the Shiite Muslim country of Iran and the Shiite- dominated government of Iraq have picked up considerably since the ouster of Saddam Hussein's Sunni-dominated regime by the 2003 U.S.- led invasion.