Iran Feature: Regime Upset as Campaign to Free Opposition Leaders is Renewed


A campaign to free Iran’s opposition leaders has been renewed, four years after the strict house arrests of Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi, and Zahra Rahnavard.

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran has released a video highlighting the plight of Mousavi and Karroubi — both candidates in the disputed 2009 Presidential election “won” by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — and Mousavi’s wife, academic and artist Zahra Rahnavard:

Fearing the revival of mass protests in February 2011, Iranian authorities — reportedly acting with the Supreme Leader’s blessing — ordered the detention of the three “Green Movement” leaders, along with Karroubi’s wife Fatemeh, who was freed months later.

Mousavi, Karroubi, and Rahnavard are strictly limited in their visits with relatives and their communications. They are also a small selection of State-run newspapers and broadcasts. Their families say they have suffered from delay in the provision of essential medical care.

President Rouhani promised in his 2013 election campaign that he would seek the freedom of the trio, as well as other political prisoners. He has been blocked by hardliners from pursuing the pledge, but leading MP Ali Motahari has taken up the campaign and called on Rouhani to appear in Parliament to explain his caution.

On Tuesday, head of judiciary Sadegh Larijani displayed anger at the efforts to release the leaders so they can face a formal trial over the regime’s allegations of “sedition”.

Larijani denounced a recent statement by the US Government about the cases:

The US State Department…has blatantly interfered in out internal affairs and it has said that no one should be under house arrest. They are telling our judges and legal experts, “Your own constitution does not allow house arrests.”…

You can’t do a damned thing….We believe the case of the seditionists must take place within the framework of secular and religious laws, and the State Department should know that their misplaced recommendation is nothing but prattle. We shall continue the path which we have hitherto taken, which is an accurate, legal, and judicial path with no problems.

The Foreign Ministry has also criticized Washington over the statement, which condemned the “continued detention and the harassment of their family members” and called on Iranian officials “to respect their international obligations and to release all [political] prisoners in their custody”.

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  1. Of course the Americans would call for the release of Mousavi and Karroubi. They were the American-backed candidates in the 2009 election, after all.

  2. reza esfandiari, the village idiot is talking again.

    I guess he saying the approval process for who can run and who can not for presidency should not be trusted. Because both these candidates were given the ***green*** light 😉

    • According to Google translation:

      A spokesman for Iran’s judiciary published the news about the death sentence for a cleric in Qom, the religious court upheld. News websites charge him, “claims related to the Imam,” “disciple and wish to play” and “relationship with the goblins’ have.”

      Could “the Imam” be the hidden one ?

      • @Don

        According to text in that link he is a famous cleric in the religious city of Qom, and son of a previous Friday prayer mullah in the city of Yazd(so was his grandfather), and he also is nephew of mohamad khatami the former president(his mother is khatami’s sister)…the death sentence is not final and can be appealed…

        lol…lol…oh god, I had to laugh so hard here, people think i’m gone mad..:-):-) I had to re-read the text.

        Yes, one of his crimes is having relationships with “ageneh” (goblins). In farsi(or arabic), the “ageneh” is a fictional character in stories when you want to scare children…it is really a comical term even in stories. But I guess in islamic republic you can be hanged for talking to ageneh…lol

        It goes on, he was accused of fortune telling on the phone, talking to the hidden imam….

        Just about you think you have heard and seen all the foolishness there is, the IRI comes out to prove you wrong:-)

  3. The editor of this site continually brings up the case of Mousavi and Karroubi, yet he ignored the plight of fellow UK-based academic Nosratollah Tajik who had been held under house arrest for six years at the instigation of the U.S Government which accused him of trying to help export night-vision goggles to Iran:

    Dr, Tajik was eventually released and the bogus charge against him was quashed.

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