Iran General NewsIran militia wants probe of opposition leader

Iran militia wants probe of opposition leader


ImageAP: Iran's feared Basij militia asked the country's chief prosecutor Wednesday to investigate embattled opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi for his role in violent protests that it said undermined national security in the aftermath of last month's presidential election.

The Associated Press


EDITOR'S NOTE: Iranian authorities have barred journalists for international news organizations from reporting on the streets and ordered them to stay in their offices. This report is based on the accounts of witnesses reached in Iran and official statements carried on Iranian media.


ImageIran's feared Basij militia asked the country's chief prosecutor Wednesday to investigate embattled opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi for his role in violent protests that it said undermined national security in the aftermath of last month's presidential election.

The semiofficial Fars news agency said the militia — known as supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's street enforcers — sent the prosecutor a letter accusing Mousavi of taking part in nine offenses against the state, including "disturbing the nation's security," which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years' imprisonment.

Iran's regime says 17 protesters and eight Basiji were killed in two weeks of unrest that followed the June 12 election. Mousavi insists the vote was tainted by massive fraud and that he — not incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — is the rightful winner.

The powerful Guardian Council, Iran's top electoral oversight body, pronounced the election results valid earlier this week — paving the way for Ahmadinejad to be sworn in later this month for a second four-year term.

"Whether he wanted to or not, Mr. Mousavi in many areas supervised or assisted in punishable acts," said the Basij letter, which also accused Mousavi of bringing "pessimism" into the public sphere.

Mousavi has slipped from public view in recent days, and he did not immediately respond to Wednesday's allegations.

In another sign of a tightening government clampdown on anyone challenging Ahmadinejad, a reformist political group said Wednesday that authorities banned a newspaper allied to presidential candidate Mehdi Karroubi after he denounced Iran's government as "illegitimate" because of claims of voting fraud.

The closure of the daily Etemad-e-Melli, or National Confidence, is another blow by officials seeking to block media and Web sites critical of Ahmadinejad.

Karroubi, a former parliament member, received only a fraction of the votes in the results announced by authorities and joined Mousavi in demanding a new election. Recently, however, Karroubi has stepped up his independent criticism of the election and could emerge as a leading dissident voice against Ahmadinejad.

On Tuesday, he issued a harshly worded statement that blasted Ahmadinejad's government and pledged to continue challenging its authority. Karroubi's political group, the National Confidence Party, said the newspaper was shut down in response.

"I don't consider this government as legitimate," said the statement posted on Karroubi's Web site. "I will continue the fight under any circumstances and using every means."

Ahmadinejad canceled plans to travel to Libya as an observer at an African Union summit, Libyan officials said. It would have been Ahmadinejad's second trip outside Iran since the election.

Iran's Foreign Ministry said unspecified "preoccupations" kept the president at home. Some African officials had complained that Ahmadinejad's presence at the three-day gathering could divert attention from Africa's problems.

Ahmadinejad on Tuesday repeated the claims that post-election street riots were linked to a "soft revolution" aided by foreign powers.

"Enemies, despite overt and covert conspiracies to topple (the ruling system) through a soft overthrow, failed to reach their goals," state television quoted Ahmadinejad as telling Intelligence Ministry officials.

It's unclear how many people have been detained during the post-election riots and protests, but at least one group, the Paris-based International Federation of Human Rights, claimed at least 2,000 arrests have been made. The figures could not be independently verified because of tight media restrictions.

Iran's cleric-led government has said Ahmadinejad would be sworn in as early as July 26.

State-run Press TV reported Wednesday that a grenade was found in a trash can inside a women's bathroom at a mausoleum in Tehran, and it cited an official as saying the incident was intended "to invoke fear in the minds of the Iranians who participated" in the disputed election.

Amnesty International said Tuesday it was concerned about the possibility that many detainees "could be severely tortured" in custody, and it joined other human rights groups in demanding the immediate release of all political prisoners.

Police chief Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam said Wednesday that Iranian intelligence officials were seeking Dr. Arash Hejazi, an Iranian doctor who tried to save Neda Agha Soltan after she was fatally shot on the sidelines of one of the demonstrations.

Hejazi, who has since fled to London, told the BBC last week that Soltan — who became an opposition icon after video of her bleeding to death was circulated worldwide — apparently was shot by a member of the volunteer Basij militia. He said protesters spotted an armed member of the militia on a motorcycle, and stopped and disarmed him.

But Ahmadi Moghaddam described the circumstances as a fabrication that had nothing to do with the street riots. He did not elaborate on why officials want Hejazi, but the regime repeatedly has implicated protesters and even foreign agents in Soltan's death.

Kole reported from Cairo. Associated Press Writers Brian Murphy and Shaya Tayefe Mohajer in Cairo contributed to this report.

Latest news

Iran Regime’s Ministry of Culture’s Decision To Eliminate Children’s Intellectual Centers

With the so-called ‘Cultural Revolution’ which took place between 1980 and 1983, the Iranian regime tried to purge the...

Water Shortage Crisis and the Destruction of Iran’s Water Resources

Iran is currently suffering from a number of dangerous natural disasters. One of the most worrying is the drying...

Economic Freedom Under the Rule of the Mullahs in Iran

The Fraser institute published its annual report of the index of economic freedom on September 8, which measured the...

Iran’s Regime Continues Its Internet Restriction Project

This is part of the outlook of a document by the Iranian regime’s Supreme Council of Cyberspace, which has...

Iran’s Human Development Index Dropped Sharply

One of the most common questions asked in primary schools by teachers all over the world is, “wealth or...

Narcotics Iran Regime’s Income Source for Terrorism

Besides Iran’s malign activities, such as its regional interference, and missile and nuclear projects, drug trafficking plays a major...

Must read

Iran’s president to seek second term, adviser says

Washington Post: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will run for...

Israel hedge funds defy Iran threat multiplying in tech center

Bloomberg: Tal Keinan, an Israeli fund manager, was ready...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you