Iran said it hanged seven members of the outlawed Mojahedin Khalq Organization in public Monday for assisting an invading Iraq-based rebel army last week.

The official Islamic Republic News Agency said the seven dissidents were hanged in Bakhtaran, about 300 miles southwest of Tehran, for having collaborated with the invaders. A crowd chanted "death to the hypocrites," IRNA said.On Sunday, Iran said its forces recaptured a border town held by Iraq and repelled Iraqi assaults across the battle-scarred frontier, but Iraq insisted it was withdrawing its troops from Iranian territory.

The latest fighting along the frontier came as the Iranian and Iraqi foreign ministers prepared for further separate talks with U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar on ways to end the nearly 8-year-old Persian Gulf war.

Prior to the resumption of the talks, Perez de Cuellar issued a statement accusing Iraqi forces of using mustard and poison gas against Iranian soldiers and civilians.

He said specialists he sent to Iran in July reported back to him that "chemical weapons continue to be used on an intensive scale against Iranian forces by Iraqi forces."

Iran's official Islamic Republic News Agency said the border skirmishing continued Sunday after Iraqi forces tried to capture the Malekshah heights near the town of Mehran, about 100 miles east of Baghdad.

There was no word from Iraq on the fighting, but the Iranian news agency said the Iraqi invaders "were faced with the brave resistance of Muslim combatants and local tribesmen who repelled them" from 16 square miles of Iranian territory.

The Iraq-based National Liberation Army of Iran, the military wing of the Mojahedin Khalq, crossed the central sector of the Iran-Iraq warfront last week, capturing Karand and Islamabad Gharb before heading for Bakhtaran.

Iranian government forces stopped the NLAI advance about 22 miles outside Bakhtaran, a key provincial capital.

Tehran radio quoted a high-ranking official as saying the NLAI entered Iran with a force of 8,000 troops but 4,800 were killed by Iranian government troops.

IRNA said three Mojahedin Khalq members were killed in clashes outside Islamabad Gharb and nearby villages Sunday, and some members of the dissident group were arrested.

Please see GULF on A2