International Journal of Anarchism
ifa-Solidaritet - folkebladet - © ISSN 0800-0220 - electronic issues ISSN 1890-9485 since 2009 - no 2 (39) editor H. Fagerhus
Bulletin of the Anarchist International
The situation in Iran
*) The stars indicate the position of the Norwegian economical-political system after the revolutionary change in 1994/95. Iran is located in the right fascist sector of the fascist quadrant of the map. For the libertarian vs authoritarian, capitalist vs socialist and statism vs autonomy degree we have used ",", the European standard instead of American/UK standard, i.e. "." as decimal separator. For most other figures we have used the American/UK standard. The term "ca" is an abbreviation for the latin circa, which means about or approximately.
Fig. 1. Picture of the Anarchist Economical-Political Map
THE ANARCHIST INTERNATIONAL
Release the political prisoners in Iran! Do away with the fascist regime!
Release the political prisoners in Iran! Do away with the fascist regime! Iran is a totalitarian fascist country with ca 71,1 % authoritarian degree, and ca 28,9% libertarian degree. It is ranked as no 102 of countries according to libertarian degree, see http://www.anarchy.no/ranking.html. With a gini-index of 43,0 it is more capitalist than the USA, with a gini-index at 40,8. The degree of capitalism in Iran is estimated to ca 76,5% and the degree of statism is estimated to ca 65,3%. Thus the degree of socialism is only ca 23,5% and the degree of autonomy is only ca 34,7%. The economic-political system of Iran is located in the right fascist sector of the quadrant of fascism on the economic-political map, see http://www.anarchy.no/a_e_p_m.html or above. It is a dictatorship, with rule by fundamentalist priests, i.e. hierarchy. BBC has a report on how Iran is ruled, see http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8051750.stm. The fascism of Iran has an ugly ultra-authoritarian face:
As you may be informed, in a pre-emptive attack on independent student organizations the Islamic regime in Iran arrested dozens of politically active students prior to the Student Day (December 7), practically a day of protest against the status quo during decades of student struggles. However, despite the said arrests, the students celebrated their day by holding protest actions in different forms on a national level. In the course of those actions more students were arrested. At present there are about forty student activists from various parts of the country held in detention in the notorious Evin prison in Tehran, as well as in other known and unknown places. The detained students have been subjected to torture and cruel treatment. The news of torture has gravely alarmed their families and the people at large.
The trumped-up charges brought against the students have aggravated the widespread concerns for their lives. Among other things, the Ministry of Intelligence has released a communiqué with regards to leftist and libertarian students claiming that "the troublemakers had already obtained slingshots, collected rocks, and made sonic hand grenades" or "the detainees were found in possession of a considerable amount of alcoholic beverages, immoral literature, heretical books, and leaflets with sacrilegious content." Also, the state-run Raja-news website has published reports stating "following extensive nation-wide investigations of the universities, the core communist cell, with connections abroad (read: connections with opposition organizations abroad), has been discovered and arrested. The said communist cell plotted to raise riots at universities on December the 7th through violent provocations, using incendiary devices such as Molotov cocktails and hand grenades ... etc."
The fake and fabricated nature of such reports is obvious to all. However, these are heavy accusations used by the regime throughout its 30-year-long existence to line up thousands of freedom-seeking people against its firing squads. Today, it resorts to the same accusations against the students. This has, naturally, caused grave worries for the lives of the detained students among their families and the people at large. We simply have to thwart this conspiracy of the régime and free the imprisoned students by means of our international solidarity.
There is presently a massive protest movement underway for the release of the students at family, university, and town levels in various parts of the country. However, what is needed for a powerful fight for their immediate and unconditional release, as well as the release of all other political prisoners in Iran, is an extended global solidarity. We, therefore, call upon all individuals, institutions and organizations defending human rights to join our international campaign for the release of the recently arrested students and all other political prisoners languishing in the dungeons of the Islamic regime in Iran. It should also be noted here that besides the detained students a large number of labor activists - among whom the internationally well-known Mahmud Saalehi, Mansur Osaanlou and Ebraahim Madadi - as well scores of women who have resisted the regime's current wave of mass intimidation on the pretext implementing its Hijab and other Islamic codes are in jail too.
An immediate demand of the Iranian people, as opposed to the authorities, is the unconditional release of the recently arrested students, as well as all other political prisoners. Lend them your extensive international support so that they can open the prison gates, release their political prisoners and take their just struggles against the barbaric Islamic regime one step further.
14.06.2009. The election fraud in Iran, violent repression of opposition and arrest of hundreds, must be stopped. A new election with independent candidates, and end to the hierarchy - rule by priests - should be done as quick as possible. The anarchists support the demonstrations, and the protests should continue until this aim is achieved.
15.06.2009. Death to the dictator! Investigation of ballot rigging. The country's government-funded Press TV reported that Iran's Guardian Council, a body of top clerics and judges, will investigate Moussavi's claims the ballot was rigged. It is expected to issue its findings within 10 days. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has given his blessing to the outcome of the election, assured Moussavi of the Council's investigation in a meeting Sunday, Press TV said. Hundreds of Moussavi supporters Monday defied a government ban on their rallies, gathering for a demonstration at Tehran University. The government had earlier in the day rejected a request by Moussavi to hold a nationwide march. The protesters are chanting slogans as: "Death to the dictator!" The anarchists call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
Later on Monday Iran's "defeated" main opposition leader appeared at a rally, the first time he has been seen in public since last week's elections which he says were rigged to give hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad overwhelming victory. Reformist Mir Hossein Moussavi appeared before hundreds of thousands of people, a reporter for Iran's Press TV said. Protests have also been held in many cities world wide including Washington; London and Toronto, while tens of thousands of others championed the demonstrations on social-networking Web sites. Also a few pro-Ahmadinejad demonstrations have occured outside Iran.
In the evening there are reports that at least one person has been killed as gunmen opened fire at an opposition rally in Iran, where according to NRK millions of reformist opposition supporters have defied the government all over the country. News agencies quote witnesses as saying many people have been wounded at the rally, which authorities had earlier tried to ban. "Defeated" presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi is quoted as saying he is ready to take part in a new election. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner after elections on Friday.
16.06.2009. "Tanks and guns have no use any more". Iran's top legal body is ready to recount votes from the disputed presidential election according to state TV. The Guardian Council said it could change the candidates' tally. The election was won by the ultra-conservative Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, but moderate candidates said it was rigged and want a re-run. The council ruled that out. Seven people were killed according to state media when supporters of losing candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi staged a huge rally in Tehran on Monday. And there are fears of more violence if opposing camps carry out their intention to stage more demonstrations later. The contested election has plunged Iran into its worst violence for thirty years. Millions turned out according to NRK, even though the Interior Ministry had declared their rally illegal. It was an act of defiance directly against Iranian authority never seen in post revolutionary Iran. The protests have not just been centred on the capital. But Mousavi has called on his supporters not to rally today "to protect their lives".
Some reporters say the Iranian opposition is concentrated mainly in the big towns like Tehran and Isfahan. But it's a mixed opposition, because it consists of Mousavi supporters, some royalists nostalgic for the time of the Shah, as well as all those opposed to the rule of the Mullahs in Iran. So the opposition comes from differing political standpoints, but it has one objective: to gain the upper hand over the Ahmedinejad supporters, and that's what gives it strength today. An eyewitness in the middle of the protests on Monday said gunmen opened fire as the crowd attacked a building that housed the feared Basij religious militia. What had begun as a huge, but peaceful protest, descended into bloodshed. Mousavi himself appeared, struggling to make himself heard above the chanting. They called out "tanks and guns have no use any more" in a direct echo of the demonstrations that preceded the fall of the Shah in 1979. Mousavi said he was ready to "pay any price" in his fight against the alleged vote-rigging. Meanwhile Iranian television has shown pictures of supporters of President Ahmadinejad gathering in Tehran. There are reports of opposition demonstrations at Tehran University - one of the main centres of tension in recent days. About 120 university lecturers have resigned. The powerful Speaker of parliament, Ali Larijani, has condemned an attack by police and militia on a student dormitory. Iranian media quoted him as saying: "The interior minister is responsible in this regard." The authorities appear to be weakening in their support for Mr Ahmadinejad. The anarchists once more call for a velvet revolution in Iran. The opposition's protests should continue, to move the system in libertarian direction.
Later Tuesday: 'Mass opposition rally' in Tehran. Supporters of Iran's "defeated" presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi have held another big rally in northern Tehran, witnesses say. The protest came hours after Mr Mousavi urged them not to march in the centre of the city where President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's supporters were rallying. It came despite an offer to recount votes the opposition disputes. Media restrictions have been imposed amid apparent surprise and concern among the authorities at the scale of popular defiance over Friday's official election results. The pro-government demonstration today was not on the scale of the opposition demonstration on Monday, and also the people didn't look as enthusiastic.
The opposition has been slightly disrupted. They were going to have a rally in the same location as the pro-Ahmadinejad rally, and decided not to - to avoid confrontation. The rally that has broken out this evening is completely spontaneous. Just people who have been exchanging e-mails and somehow worked out where everyone is gathering. The government has closed down the mobile phone network, but people are still managing to communicate. There is no doubt that the opposition is not being deterred, even by the shooting there was at the demonstrators in Tehran yesterday and reportedly in several other cities. There are reports that Tuesday's opposition rally was even bigger than Monday's - though this cannot be independently confirmed.
The authorities have imposed tough new restrictions on foreign journalists operating in Tehran. They must now obtain explicit permission before leaving the office to cover any story. Journalists have also been banned from attending or reporting on any "unauthorised" demonstration - and it is unclear which if any of the protests are formally authorised. Press cards have been declared invalid.
Some telephone, SMS and internet services have also been restricted, prompting some protesters to turn to the internet messaging service Twitter to communicate. The importance of such new means of communication was highlighted by a US official on Tuesday. The official said the state department contacted Twitter over the weekend to urge it to delay a planned upgrade that could have cut daytime service to Iranians. Dozens of people have been arrested since the protests began - including Mohammad Ali Abtahi, a close aide of ex-President Mohammad Khatami, and journalist and academic Ahmad Zeidabadi. On Tuesday, lawyer Abdolfatah Soltani of the Human Rights Defenders' Centre was arrested. The centre is led by Iranian Nobel peace prizewinner Shirin Ebadi. Unrest has also been reported in other Iranian cities including Mashhad, Isfahan and Shiraz. Iranian state television said the "main agents" behind the unrest had been detained, and guns and explosives seized.
In Washington, President Barack Obama again expressed "deep concern" at events in Iran, but said it would not be helpful if the US was seen to be "meddling". Earlier, EU foreign ministers expressed "serious concern" and called for an inquiry into the conduct of the election. But the Iranian authorities have bristled over the criticism. On Tuesday the Iranian foreign ministry summoned the Czech charge' d'affaires in Tehran to complain over the EU's "rude and interfering" remarks. Meanwhile, President Ahmadinejad arrived in Russia on Tuesday. He told a regional summit that the "age of empires" had ended, but made no mention of the protests. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran. The opposition's protests should continue, to move the system in libertarian direction ...!!! The ban on media must be lifted.
17.06.2009. "Free Iran! Go To Hell Dictator!" The protests continue... Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi issued a direct challenge Wednesday to the country's supreme leader and cleric-led system, calling for a mass rally to protest disputed election results and violence against his followers. A crackdown on dissent continued, with more arrests of opposition figures reported, and the country's most powerful military force - the Revolutionary Guard - saying that Iranian Web sites and bloggers must remove any materials that "create tension" or face legal action. In one high-profile display of apparent opposition support, several Iranian soccer players wore green wrist bands - the color of Mousavi's campaign - during a World Cup qualifying match in South Korea that was televised in Iran. Fans from Iran unfurled a banner in the stands that read "Go To Hell Dictator," and waved Iran's national flags emblazoned with the plea "Free Iran."
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has told Mousavi to pursue his demands through the electoral system and called for Iranians to unite behind their Islamic government, an extraordinary appeal in response to tensions over the presidential vote. But Mousavi appears unwilling to back down, issuing on his Web site a call for a mass demonstration Thursday. "We want a peaceful rally to protest the unhealthy trend of the election and realize our goal of annulling the results," Mousavi said. Web sites associated with Mousavi and the reformists called for at least one rally later Wednesday. Later on Wednesay several international newsmedia report about large protests. Blogs and Web sites such as Facebook and Twitter have been vital conduits for Iranians to inform the world about protests and violence. The Web became more essential after the government barred foreign media Tuesday from leaving their offices to report on demonstrations on the streets of Tehran. Mousavi condemned the government for blocking Web sites, saying the government did not tolerate the voice of the opposition. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
18.06.2009. The large protests continue. Clad in black for mourning, Iranians took to the streets Thursday to protest last week's presidential vote and grieve for those who died in post-election violence. Supporters of Mir Hossein Moussavi -- the country's top opposition candidate -- planned to turn Tehran into a sea of black as they marched in silence to express their displeasure. Demonstrators -- also wearing bands of green, a gesture adopted by Moussavi supporters -- started their rallies from mosques across the Iranian capital and planned to converge in a city square Thursday afternoon, for what is expected to be one of the largest protests since last Friday's disputed election -- which President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, won by a huge margin.
Moussavi, who has so far appeared at one rally, said he will attend Thursday's "ceremony of mourning" and his supporters also have asked the government for permission to rally on Saturday. The opposition leader asked his supporters to dress in black Thursday as a sign of respect for those who died or were wounded "as a result of illegal and violent clashes" with his opponents. As the protests over the elections mount, Iranian officials have reacted. The Guardian Council, the Iranian government body that agreed to recount votes in the face of daily protests over last week's presidential election, will be meeting with candidates to discuss their complaints.
Later hundreds of thousands of protesters wearing black and carrying candles filled the streets of Tehran, joining opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi to mourn demonstrators killed in clashes over Iran's disputed election. The massive protest openly defied orders from Iran's supreme leader, despite a government attempt to placate Mousavi and his supporters by inviting the reformist, and two other candidates who ran against hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, to a meeting with the country's main electoral authority. Many in the huge crowd carried black candles and lit them as night fell. Others wore green wristbands and carried flowers in mourning as they filed into Imam Khomenei Square, a large plaza in the heart of the capital named for the founder of the Islamic Revolution, witnesses said. Press TV, an English-language version of Iranian state television designed for foreigners, estimated the crowd at hundreds of thousands and said the people listened to a brief address from Mousavi, who called for calm and self-restraint. A Mousavi Web site said that the crowed exceeded 1 million. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
19.06.2009. Iran's Ayatollah to break silence. Iran's supreme leader is to address the nation for the first time since disputed election results sparked huge protests in the capital, Tehran. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who backs the re-election of President Ahmadinejad, is due to speak at Friday prayers. The authorities have been laying on bus services and urging people to come to hear Mr Khamenei speak. Correspondents say the amount of people the ayatollah can rally will be as closely watched as what he says. The ayatollah's address follows days of rallies by backers of presidential rival Mir Hossein Mousavi, who believe the vote was fixed. The rallying cry of the protesters has been "death to the dictator", and the chant is surely directed at Ayatollah Khamenei. Whether the protesters understand it or not, they are implicitly challenging the whole system. The ayatollah will deliver a sermon at the University of Tehran - scene of several clashes between police and students in recent days. Under the republic's constitution, the supreme leader has unfettered power to run the country and shape policy. The unrest has spurred the authorities to clamp down on dissent by blocking websites, restricting journalists and arresting hundreds of activists they regard as opponents. Mr Mousavi and two other candidates in the election have made more than 600 complaints to the Guardian Council - the main electoral authority. The objections include a shortage of ballot papers, voters being pressurised to support a particular candidate and the barring of candidates' representatives from polling stations. The council has invited the three to a meeting to discuss their objections on Saturday. The protests continue...
Later the arch-enemy of the Iranian people, Ayatollah Khamenei, demands end to the protests. The anarchists call for continued non-ochlarchical protests, to achieve a significant blow to his fascist regime. The anarchists support the people, seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank and/or income. The people's protests should have influence on the system, and the anarchists call for more protests on the streets.
Iran's Supreme Leader has issued a stern warning that protests against the country's disputed presidential election results must end. In his first public remarks after days of demonstrations, Ayatollah Khamenei said the outcome must be decided at the ballot box, not on the street. He said political leaders would be blamed for any violence. The anarchists are not for violence and ochlarchy in general. This is a warning to the archy-enemy of the people of Iran against using violence to repress the protests. It will backfire.
Demonstrators calling for a new election earlier vowed to stage fresh protests on Saturday. Addressing thousands of people at Tehran University, the ayatollah voiced support for the ultra-authoritarian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, saying the president's views on foreign affairs and social issues were close to his. Responding to allegations of electoral fraud, the ayatollah insisted the Islamic Republic would not cheat. "There is 11 million votes difference," the ayatollah said. "How one can rig 11 million votes?" He appealed to candidates who had doubts about the election result to pursue any challenges through legal avenues. Ayatollah Khamenei appears to have staked everything on this election result and Mr Ahmadinejad. The anarchists don't think the arch-enemy will dare to use a heavy crackdown if the massive protests continue.
In his highly anticipated address after Friday prayers, the ayatollah said despite differences of opinion among the presidential candidates, they were all trustworthy and loyal to the Islamic Republic. He said the election was a "political earthquake" for Iran's enemies - singling out Great Britain as "the most evil of them" - whom he accused of trying to foment unrest in the country. The official results gave Mr Ahmadinejad 63% of the vote against 34% for his main election rival, Mir Hossein Mousavi. The Guardian Council - Iran's main electoral authority - has as mentioned invited Mr Mousavi and two other defeated candidates to discuss their objections tomorrow. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
20.06.2009. Ayatollah Khamenei Friday also made clear there would not be another election, warning that "the consequences of any further violence or public disturbances would be borne by those responsible." The anarchists are warning Ayatollah Khamenei. If his armed fascist gangs and police attack peaceful protesters with violence and murder he is as criminal as Hitler, and will be condemned the same way world wide and for all future.
Later Saturday thousands of demonstrators, some shouting "Death to the dictator - Death to Khamenei", emerged on city streets to protest in defiance of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's Friday pronouncement that protests must end. The protests were mainly peaceful, and the anarchists are reminding Khamenei that it is criminal to ban and stop violently peaceful protests according to the Iranian Constitution and universal human rights. Police reported that some public property was attacked. Police fired guns in the air and used tear gas and clubs, and Iran's Press TV also reported the use of water cannons, to disperse protesters. There are no reports of murders by the police and Khamenei's fascist gangs so far on Saturday. A bomb attacker was killed Saturday at the entrance of the late Ayatollah Khomeini's mausoleum outside Tehran, according to Iranian media reports. The anarchists condemn the violent attacks on peaceful protesters by Khamenei's forces, the attacks on public property, and the bomb attacker. The only violence anarchists accept is violence, proportionate, in self defense... The Facebook page of Iran's top opposition presidential candidate quoted him Saturday as saying he is preparing to die and urging his followers to go on strike if authorities arrest him. Mir Hossein Moussavi, who has led a protest against the government over last week's election, said he is preparing himself for "martyrdom" and is quoted as telling supporters to "protest" and "not go to work." The authenticity of the message could not immediately be established. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
In the evening there are reports that the unrest left 19 people dead, according to hospital sources. Unconfirmed reports put the death toll as high as 150 on the seventh day of post-election demonstrations. Ayatollah Khamenei is trying to be as criminal as Hitler, the anarchists say, and strongly condemn Khamenei.
21.06.2009. The protests continue. The arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is responsible for the bloodshed, also the murder of the peaceful protesting girl Neda. Arrest the arch-criminal Khamenei and give him a life sentence in jail, the anarchists demand.
A state TV report said 10 people had been killed and more than 100 wounded in clashes between police and "terrorist groups" in Tehran Saturday. The official reports, which cannot be confirmed, also accuse "rioters" of setting two petrol stations and a mosque ablaze. These terrorist accusations are not true. The anarchists condemn rioters destroying houses, cars, etc, but there were no real terrorists involved, except the bomb attacker. The protests Saturday were mainly peaceful, and thus not criminal. However the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is responsible for the bloodshed, also the murder of the peaceful protesting girl Neda, with cold blood. Arrest the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and give him a life sentence in jail, the anarchists demand. There seems to be a fracture in the leadership of this country.... Some of the Iranian leadership has repeatedly accused foreign powers of interfering in Iran's domestic affairs, with the UK the particular focus of ire. This is not true. This is a fight between the Iranian people and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his ultra-authoritarian right fascist system. The anarchists and other internationals support the people of Iran in this fight, and that is perfectly legal.
Iran's Mir Hossein Mousavi urges supporters to protest but show restraint. The anarchists call for more protests without ochlarchy, i.e. mob rule broadly defined. NRK and TV2 reported of several demonstrations Sunday. Large crowds marched down a major Tehran thoroughfare shouting, "Don't be afraid, we're together!" and "Death to dictator!" A protest also took place at Southern Tehran's Azad University, where final exams were postponed after about 200 students refused to take them. Thousands of riot police and members of the fascist gang Basij militia were on the streets, but did not manage to stop a lot of protests. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran.
The International Anarchist Tribunal - The Anarchist Press Tribunal, IAT-APT, hands out a Brown Card, according to the Oslo Convention, to Abadi Ba A Wan at BBC Date Line London, saying "we could have anarchy, terrorism, etc..." in Iran, as a result of the protests. He is probably meaning rivaling polyarchy with ochlarchy including terrorism, and that is not anarchy, but a very authoritarian form of archy, even more authoritarian than the present fascist system in Iran. The anarchists don't have these fears. If the massprotests continue for a long time, with dialogue, we may see a less authoritarian system after some time. But it may take long time before Iran reaches anarchy, as, say, the systems in Norway and Switzerland, a libertarian system, with less than 50% authoritarian degree. More information at http://www.anarchy.no/iat.html .
22.06.2009. Brown Card to the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his foreign ministry. Western powers are seeking to undermine Iran by spreading "anarchy and vandalism", the foreign ministry says. A spokesman said foreign media were "mouthpieces" of enemy governments seeking Iran's disintegration. This is not true. Speaking at a news conference on Monday, foreign ministry spokesman Hassan Qashqavi accused Western governments of explicitly backing violent protests aimed at undermining the stability of Iran's Islamic Republic. "Spreading anarchy and vandalism by Western powers and also Western media... these are not at all accepted," he said. He also said the West was acting in an "anti-democratic" manner, instead praising Iran's commitment to democracy and stressing once again that the results of the presidential election were unimpeachable. The anarchists and other internationals, supporting the Iranian people's protests, are of course not "anti-democratic". Non-ochlarchical protest is an important part of democracy.
1. Authoritarians, as the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and his foreign ministry including Hassan Qashqavi, notoriously mix up anarchy with authoritarian tendencies : Chaos, disorder, mob rule (narrowly defined), lawlessness, the law of the jungle, criminality, riots, theft, corruption, drugs, mafia, terrorism, autocratic rule, the right to the strongest, antisocial tyrannic behavior, etc., including vandalism i.e. different types of superiors and subordinates . The Greek rooted word for mob rule is ochlarchy. Ochlarchy broadly defined may also be used as a common word for all the authoritarian evils mentioned above. This is ochlarchy, the opposite of anarchy, and the anarchists of course condemn ochlarchy, including vandalism, in Iran related to the protests. But we also condemn the ochlarchy of the government, beating and murdering peaceful protesters.
2. The word anarchy origins from greek. The prefix "an" means "negation of" as in anaerobe versus aerobe and "arch" means "superior, i.e. in contrast to subordinates", as in archbishop, archangel, archduke, arch villain, arch-criminal, etc. Thus anarchy, anarchism, anarchist, a.s.o., mean coordination on equal footing, without superiors and subordinates, i.e. horizontal organization and co-operation without coercion, ideally or practically. Anarchy, [an-arch]-y means [an = without, arch = ruler(s)]-y = system, management as in monarch-y. Thus anarchy and anarchism mean "system and management without ruler(s), i.e. co-operation without repression, tyranny and slavery". That is economic and political/administrative, societal, management from the people, grassroots, and upwards - significantly, without a top heavy pyramid in rank and/or income, i.e. without a top - down approach. And thus anarchies are systems with significantly small rank and income differences, plus efficiency, i.e. significantly horizontally organized, real democracy. This is the opposite of the above mentioned authoritarian tendencies, i.e. different types of superiors and subordinates, a top - down approach. Iran is today far from anarchy, i.e. real democracy...
3. To mix up opposites as anarchy and ochlarchy, as the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his foreign ministry including Hassan Qashqavi do, is equally authoritarian as mixing up opposites as peace and war, as Big Brother did in Orwell's "1984" newspeak. It should be stopped, and the IAT-APT in such cases hands out a Brown Card, as free criticism of this authoritarian tendency. Thus the IAT-PAT hands out a Brown Card to the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his foreign ministry including Hassan Qashqavi. Stop spreading this disinformation about anarchy!
International campaign group Reporters Without Borders says 23 local journalists and bloggers have been arrested over the past week.
Iran's Guardian Council says it found irregularities in 50 constituencies, but denied that affected the result. Challenger Mir Hossein Mousavi says the vote was rigged in favour of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and must be re-run. Mr Mousavi, whose supporters make up most of the protesting crowds, urged them to continue their rallies. "Protesting against lies and fraud is your right. In your protests continue to show restraint," a statement on his website said. Mr Mousavi is also saying the Islamic Republic needs root and branch reform, and it is hard to imagine Iran being the same place at the end of this crisis. But Mr Mousavi needs to find a way of channelling his popular support and to exploit the backing he also has amongst some of Iran's senior clerics and politicians. Opposition supporters passing messages online said they planned to carry candles at a rally in Tehran on Monday evening in memory of those killed. However, heavy security on the streets meant it was not clear whether they would be able to gather freely in mass demonstrations.
At the same time though, the supreme leader and the president are determined to hold to their position. The question for the opposition is how to get that energy coming off the streets to make inroads with the elders at the top level. This is a very tight-knit group of people who have been together for 30 years or more. What makes this different and unique is that in the past, although there has been unrest, there has never been a break in the elite. The anarchists continue to support non-ochlarchical protests in Iran, also the protests Monday evening, and again call for a velvet revolution.
Later the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's hierarchy has threatened to crush fully legal peaceful protests on Monday, violently. The anarchist call on the protesters to do evasive manoeuvres, to avoid bloodshed: Demonstrate on the roofs, in back streets, etc., and avoid direct confrontations with the fascist gangs of the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as much as possible.
Iran's "Revolutionary Guards", i.e. fascist gangs, have threatened to crack down on any new street protests. In a statement, the guards vowed to react in a "revolutionary" way, i.e. contra-revolutionary, to suppress "unauthorised" demonstrations. The Revolutionary Guards, Iran's elite security force, have close ties to the country's supreme leader, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. In a statement posted on their website, the Guards said their troops would break up street protests and force protesters from the streets. "Be prepared for a resolution and revolutionary confrontation with the Guards, Basij [pro-government militia] and other security forces and disciplinary forces [i.e. all fascist gangs]," the Guards said. The Iranian leadership is falling into the same trap that their arch-enemy the Shah of Iran fell into in the 1970s. They are not listening to the people...
Protesters defy Tehran rally ban. Iranian riot police have reportedly fired tear gas to break up a new opposition rally in central Tehran hours after the warning to protesters. Some 1,000 protesters had gathered on Haft-e Tir Square despite a warning from Iran's "Revolutionary Guards" against holding "unapproved" rallies. An unconfirmed report says riot police fired bullets into the air.
Later thousands of Iranians congregated and passed through Haft-e Tir Square, but riot police and the pro-government Basij militia confronted them and smacked their batons against their shin guards, making loud cracking sounds that seemed like gunshots. Iranians have continued protesting by taking to the streets. Most stores around the square were closed as the unrest reverberated, with some guarding against damage by erecting steel fences on their windows. Helicopters hovered overhead as the security forces wielded batons and used a spray to push the crowd out of the square. After that, police chased down demonstrators in nearby alleys and streets, with protesters and lawmen playing cat and mouse over several tension-filled hours until the crowd began to thin out around dusk. There were isolated face-offs and quarrels that broke out between demonstrators and the riot police and the Basij militia, a volunteer paramilitary force that takes orders from the Revolutionary Guard, a military unit under the direct control of Iran's supreme leader, all fascist gangs. There were no reports of serious injuries, but there were at least eight arrests, witnesses said. Demonstrators Monday had brushed off a warning from the Revolutionary Guard that people who "disturb the peace and stand up to security forces" would be met with a strong response. The protesters are talking about finding other ways to show their opposition, including strikes or civil disobedience.
23.06.2009. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for an end to the street violence, and threats of violence. Mr Ban urged the authorities in Iran to respect fundamental civil rights, "especially the freedom of assembly and expression", and end arrests. The anarchists agree with Ban Ki-moon. Iran's legislative body, the Guardian Council, has said there were no major polling irregularities in the 12 June election and ruled out an annulment. Opposition supporters called for the vote to be set aside and the elections re-run amid claims of vote tampering. But Guardian Council spokesman Abbas Ali Kadkhoda'i said there was "no major fraud or breach in the election".
Meanwhile, opposition candidate Mehdi Karoubi urged Iranians to mourn for dead protestors on Thursday. Mr Karoubi, who is among those asking for the election to be set aside, wants mourning ceremonies to be held around the country, his aide Issa Saharkhiz said. His call echoed an earlier one from cleric Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, who has called for three days of national mourning for those killed in the street protests. Also a message on opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi's Facebook page, which could not be authenticated, called for a peaceful demonstration in Tehran on Thursday to honor the dead. "We are waiting for the route of the march to be announced as well as the location of the sit-in," the message said. "Presently the mausoleum of the founder of the Islamic Republic seems to be the safest place for the sit-in, so that we can mourn for our martyrs in a place that is close to the spirit of that free man." The anarchists continue to support non-ochlarchical protests in Iran and again call for a velvet revolution.
24.06.2009. The state terrorism of the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei continues! And more lies are coming from his regime! Security forces, fascist thugs, wielding clubs and firing weapons beat back demonstrators who flocked to a Tehran square Wednesday to continue protests, with one witness saying security forces beat people like "animals." At least two sources described wild and violent conditions at a part of Tehran where protesters had planned to demonstrate. "They were waiting for us," the source said. "They all have guns and riot uniforms. It was like a mouse trap." "I see many people with broken arms, legs, heads -- blood everywhere -- pepper gas like war," the source said. About "500 thugs" with clubs came out of a mosque and attacked people in the square, another source said. The security forces were "beating women madly" and "killing people like hell," the source said. "They beat up a woman so bad, she was all bloody," the source said in a description that underscores the growing and central role of women in the uprising. "Women are playing an amazing role in the streets, both in terms of numbers and effectiveness," according to a member of Mir Hossein Moussavi's party. The Iranian capital remained tense Wednesday. Some residents said they were too afraid to talk about the political crisis over the phone to anyone in the United States or Europe. Many protesters debated whether to show up on the streets. Worried the government was monitoring their phone conversations, some residents said the Internet was the best way to transmit information. However, the spotty connection made it difficult to rely on the Web. "It's beyond fear," said a woman who arrived at a USairport from Iran but still did not want her name used for fear for her safety. "The situation is more like terror."
Iranian authorities said they have arrested several foreign nationals, some with British passports, in connection with the country's post-election unrest. Intelligence Minister Gholamhossein Mohseni-Ezhei said some with links to the West and Israel had planned a series of bombings in Iran ahead of the June 12 election, the government-funded Press TV reported Wednesday. This is not true. "England is among the countries that fan the flames with their heavy propaganda, which is against all diplomatic norms," Mohseni-Ezhei was quoted as saying by the semi-official Fars news agency. "And the BBC Farsi has also played a major role. Also, a number of people carrying British passports have played a role in the recent disturbances." The British Foreign Office said it was looking into the claims. "We have seen reports of the arrest of British nationals in Iran," the foreign office said. "Consular colleagues and the embassy in Tehran are making inquiries."
Iran is saying that the woman who has emerged as an emblem of the Iranian government's crackdown against protesters might have been shot dead by "mistake," the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency reported Wednesday. The report said the investigation into the death of Neda Agha-Soltan is ongoing, "but according to the evidence so far, it could be said that she was killed by mistake." This is not true. The report continues: "The marksmen had mistaken her for the sister of one of the Monafeghin who had been executed in the Province of Mazandaran some time ago." Monafeghin refers to the People's Mujahedin Organization of Iran, which promotes a secular, marxist government for Iran and has waged a violent campaign against the fundamentalist Islamic Tehran government -- including bombings that killed politicians, judges and cabinet members. The anarchists take a clear stand against these leftwing extremist marxist ochlarchs, but they should be arrested if criminal, not killed.
Tehran said Wednesday that it was temporarily recalling its ambassador from London, another move in an escalating tit-for-tat gestures between the two governments. On Tuesday, Britain expelled two Iranian diplomats. A day earlier, Iran asked two British diplomats to leave. The difficulty in accessing information has been compounded by a government clampdown on foreign media. International journalists have as mentioned been banned from covering the protests, prompting media outlets to rely on citizens who are using social networking Web sites to send out videos and photographs depicting scenes of chaos, initiated by the regime's fascist thugs. According to Reporters Without Borders, 36 journalists have been arrested -- 26 of them Iranian -- since the June 12 presidential election, and "many others" are missing.
25.06.2009. MPs 'snub' Ahmadinejad poll party. More than 100 MPs appear to have snubbed an invitation to celebrate Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's election win, local press reports say. All 290 MPs were invited to the victory party on Wednesday night but 105 did not turn up, the reports say. About 50 MPs in the Iranian parliament are reformist and would not have been expected to attend Mr Ahmadinejad's party. But the high number of other MPs who stayed away is another indication about a split nation, The move is a sign of the deep split at the top of Iran after disputed presidential polls. Meanwhile, Mr Ahmadinejad has told the US not to interfere in Iranian politics, the Fars news agency reports. Mir Hossein Mousavi said on his website said that 70 academics were arrested after meeting with him. Hundreds of opposition protesters and activists are believed to have been taken into custody and at least 17 people have died in the unrest that followed the 12 June election. Wednesday's protest was smaller than on previous days amid an increasingly heavy security presence on the streets. Reformist election candidate Mehdi Karoubi on Thursday called off a planned ceremony to mourn those killed in the protests, saying he had been unable to get permission for it. Mir Hossein Mousavi vowed to persevere with his election challenge despite the apparent attempt to isolate him from his supporters.
26.06.2009. Protesters break into Iranian embassy in Sweden. Angry demonstrators broke into the Iranian Embassy outside Stockholm on Friday, climbing in through shattered windows and injuring one embassy worker, police said. More than 150 people had gathered outside the embassy to protest against the Iranian regime, when some of them attacked the building with rocks and tore down a fence to enter the embassy grounds, police spokesman Ulf Hoglund said. "A few managed to climb through broken windows into the building," Hoglund said. He said one member of the embassy staff was injured inside the building, but didn't know how seriously. Fifty police officers and an ambulance were dispatched to the scene. Hoglund said police had evicted the demonstrators from the building and arrested one person. Organizers of the demonstration said a few of the protesters were injured in clashes with the embassy's security officers. "We want a regime change," said Firouzeh Ghaffrpour, one of the organizers. "The Islamic system is not wanted by the people of Iran." The protesters, mostly Iranians, also demanded the embassy be closed. Police said the situation was under control later Friday, but demonstrators continued to block the entrance, preventing embassy personnel from leaving. The protest followed several peaceful demonstrations in Sweden after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected in a June 12 vote that the opposition claims was marred by massive fraud.
More than two dozen Iranian journalists are among the hundreds of people being imprisoned by the hardline government in Tehran as part of the violent post-election crackdown, according to Amnesty International. As many as 30 journalists remain in detention, according to the human rights group, which calls the arrested reporters "prisoners of conscience." Mass gatherings have waned into scattered protests as the Iranian clergy that rules the country tightened its repression of opponents since the bitterly disputed election. Foreign news journalists have as mentioned been banned from the streets, and some foreign reporters have been expelled from the country. Two journalists reporting for foreign news outlets have also been arrested, according to Amnesty: Maziar Bahari of Newsweek, on June 21, and Iason Athanasiadis-Fowden of The Washington Times, who was arrested on or around June 19. About 20 of 25 employees of the Iranian newspaper Kalameh Sabz were arrested at their office on June 22. Their whereabouts remain unknown, according to Amnesty. Opposition presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi established the newspaper earlier this year. "Release the prisoners of conscience and all political prisoners!", the anarchists demand.
Amnesty International spokeswoman Sharon Singh said Amnesty has at least two sources on each of the arrests. In many cases family members bring their problems to the organization. "If nothing else, the authorities must immediately disclose the whereabouts of these journalists, ensure that they are not tortured or otherwise ill-treated and allow their families and lawyers access to them," said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa for Amnesty International. "Unless the authorities lift all unlawful restrictions on freedom of expression which includes the right of journalists to report on events and release all the journalists arrested, we can only assume they are trying to hide evidence of abuse and further silence any critical voice," Sahraoui added. Keyvan Samimi Behbehani, editor of the banned Nameh magazine, was arrested at home, the group says. He is a member of the Center for Human Rights Defenders' Arbitrary Arrests Committee. Also arrested was Mohammad Ghochani, the editor of Etemad-e Melli. Amnesty International believes he is held in a Ministry of Intelligence prison.
27.06.2009. Iran's president lashes out at Obama. Iran's hardline president lashed out anew at the United States and President Barack Obama on Saturday, accusing him of interference and suggesting that Washington's stance on Iran's postelection turmoil could imperil Obama's aim of improving relations. "We are surprised at Mr. Obama," Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in remarks to judiciary officials broadcast on state television. "Didn't he say that he was after change? Why did he interfere?" "They keep saying that they want to hold talks with Iran ... but is this the correct way? Definitely, they have made a mistake," Ahmadinejad said. Obama was strongly criticized at home and by many abroad, for his initial measured response to opposition allegations that Ahmadinejad was re-elected by fraud in the June 12 balloting and to the harsh crackdown on protesters. The Obama administration wants to improve contacts with Tehran, especially because of concern that Iran is developing nuclear weapons, and Obama appeared unwilling to jeopardize that goal with strong statements against Iran's authorities. But on Friday, he hailed the demonstrators in Iran and condemned the violence against them. "Their bravery in the face of brutality is a testament to their enduring pursuit of justice," Obama said. "The violence perpetrated against them is outrageous. In spite of the government's efforts to keep the world from bearing witness to that violence, we see it and we condemn it."
Meanwhile, opposition supporters, faced with a senior cleric's demand that protest leaders be severely punished or even executed, enter the third week of their campaign against the election results in increasingly tight straits. Opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, who claims Ahmadinejad stole the election, says he will seek official permission for any future rallies, effectively ending his role in street protests. The opposition may have little opportunity to keep momentum going within the limits of the law, and the international attention that appeared to bolster their morale could be waning. Also, Mousavi's Web site, his primary means for communicating with supporters, remained down on Saturday; an aide told the Associated Press Friday that the site had been hacked. In one of the harshest statements from authorities since protests broke out after the June 12 election, Ayatollah Ahmed Khatami, a ranking cleric, said "Anyone who takes up arms to fight with the people, they are worthy of execution." Those who disturbed the peace and destroyed public property were "at war with God" and should be "dealt with without mercy," he said Friday in a nationally televised sermon. His call for merciless retribution for those who stirred up Iran's largest wave of dissent since the 1979 Islamic Revolution came as Mousavi slipped further from view.
Mousavi as mentioned said he would seek official permission for any future rallies, effectively ending his role in street protests organized by supporters who insist he won the election. Mousavi alleges he was robbed of victory through widespread and systematic fraud. The regime rejects the claim, refusing to consider new balloting, and on Friday, the Guardian Council - Iran's top electoral body - proclaimed the vote the "healthiest" held since the revolution. Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has ruled out a revote. Since the election, opposition protesters repeatedly have clashed with security forces who arrested hundreds of people, including journalists, academics and university students. At least 17 people have been killed, in addition to eight members of the pro-government Basij militia, officials have said. The demonstrations petered out this week under an ever-intensifying crackdown. Mousavi, meanwhile, has sent mixed signals to supporters, asking them not to break the law while pledging not to drop his challenge.
Amnesty International called the prospect of quick trials and capital punishment for some detainees "a very worrying development." It said Iran was the world's No. 2 executioner after China last year, with at least 346 known instances of people put to death. The group also called on the regime to release dozens of detained journalists it said faced possible torture. As the protests dwindle amid intensifying official pressure, the opposition may suffer from a decline in international attention. The protests and violence dominated Western news broadcasts for nearly two weeks, with the reports substantially bolstered by videos gleaned from Internet sites and by commentary from social networking sites. Such sites were a key pipeline for the opposition amid the tight restrictions on foreign media in the country. But along with the diminished action on the streets in Iran, other stories have arisen to siphon away attention - especially the death of pop star Michael Jackson. Television coverage of Iran's turmoil has fallen since Jackson's death Thursday; on the Twitter micro-blogging site, Iran remained among the most discussed topics, but fell below Jackson and comments about the movie "Transformers 2." Non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations against the fascist regime are not illegal according to the Iranian Constitution and universal human rights, the anarchists repeat: Thus such demonstrations should continue...
Human Rights Watch has accused Iran's volunteer Basij militia of carrying out night-time raids, destroying property in private homes and beating civilians. The New York-based group says the raids are an attempt to stop the nightly rooftop chants against the government. It also says satellite dishes are being confiscated to stop people from watching foreign news. After being banned from taking to the streets, opposition protesters in Tehran have been chanting anti-government slogans from their rooftops and balconies in the last few days, starting every evening at 2200 local time. But Human Rights Watch has now complained that members of the Basij militia have been raiding houses to stop the protests. "Witnesses are telling us that the Basijis are trashing entire streets and even neighborhoods as well as individual homes trying to stop the nightly rooftop protest chants," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director, in a statement posted on the group's website. Videos have also been posted on the internet of the aftermath of the raids, showing damage to satellite dishes. A man interviewed on a video, which appears to be authentic - said he could not complain to the police because they too were involved in the violence.
'No meddling'. The latest developments come a day after US President Barack Obama praised the bravery of protesters in the face of "outrageous" violence. President Ahmadinejad hit back at Mr Obama on Saturday, repeating his call not to interfere in Iranian affairs. He said that if European and American officials believed they could affect the way that Iran's government went about its business, they were wrong. The Iranian authorities are consistently blaming foreigners for what has happened in Tehran, and have accused Mr Mousavi of being in league with them. Mr Mousavi has called for an annulment of the 12 June presidential vote because of "election rigging". Iran's powerful Guardian Council is due to give its final ruling on the election on Sunday, but a spokesman on Friday already insisted there had been no election fraud.
28.06.2009. More ochlarchy and lies from the fascist regime - but Iran's government will allow a demonstration at Tehran's Ghoba mosque Sunday. Iran's government will allow a demonstration at Tehran's Ghoba mosque Sunday. The gathering is officially meant to honor Mohammad Beheshti, a participant of the 1979 Islamic Revolution who was killed in a bombing on this date in 1981. The demonstration comes after two weeks of protests against the present regime. A post on a Web site associated with opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi urged people to go to the rally. "There will be a gathering in 'Ghoba' Mosque and it's legal! Please send this message to everyone you can in Iran," says the post in Farsi and English, on a page which claims to be Moussavi's Facebook site. The Anarchist International don't know whether the site is run by Moussavi or his associates, or not. The Iranian people's arch-enemy, Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Sunday called for an end to street demonstrations. "I advise both sides not to provoke the emotions of the youth, not to stage people against one another," he said in a speech on government-funded Press TV. "This integrated nation must not be split and a group must not be incited against one another." Although it is allowing the demonstration -- intended for "the pious" -- Iran intensified its crackdown over the weekend, reportedly seizing wounded protesters from their hospital beds and arresting local British embassy staff in Tehran. The anarchists condemn these doings by the fascist regime.
British Foreign Secretary David Miliband protested the arrest of embassy staff as "harassment and intimidation of a kind which is quite unacceptable." "About nine" staffers have been affected, he said, adding that some had already been released. "We have protested in strong terms directly to the Iranian authorities about the arrests that took place yesterday," but there has been no response, Miliband said. Eight local staff members at the embassy were detained for "their role in the unrest", Iran's government-funded Press TV reported Sunday. The Foreign Office in London confirmed there had been arrests but would not say how many. Last week, Tehran expelled two British diplomats. London responded by booting out two Iranian envoys. Iran then recalled its ambassador to Britain, saying it would reconsider its diplomatic ties with the United Kingdom.
Amnesty International said Saturday that government-backed paramilitary forces are preventing doctors from getting names from wounded demonstrators or asking how they were hurt. "The Basijis are waiting for them," said Banafsheh Akhlaghi, western regional director of the human rights group, referring to the government's paramilitary arm, a fascist gang. The clampdown comes as the deadline looms to file complaints against the results of the disputed election, which is one of the reasons for weeks of demonstrations. Akhlaghi said the group has interviewed people who have left Iran and expatriates with relatives in the country. Those people said the Basij has prohibited medical officials from getting identifying information from demonstrators wounded in the streets. They are also not allowed to ask how the injuries happened. Once the patients are treated, the militia removes them from the hospital to an undisclosed location, she said. Mohammad Javad Larijani, the secretary general of the pro-government "Iran's Human Rights High Council", rejected Amnesty's claims as "totally false and fabricated," and accused the group of "animosity towards Iran." The report from Amnesty is objective and backed up by other sources, the anarchists say.
Iran's minister of justice said the country has adequate documents to prove foreign interference in post-election events in Tehran, the country's semi-official Fars news agency reported Sunday. "As regards foreign interference, the foreign ministry has adopted some measures and holds adequate documents," Gholam Hossein Elham said, addressing a judiciary forum in Tehran. Fars did not say what documents Elham produced, if any. The minister also accused Western media outlets of promoting dissent, saying, "The (Western) media's interference is not latent." The nationalist propaganda claim of "foreign interference" is not true, the anarchists say.
The Guardian Council, which oversees elections in Iran, reminded opposition candidates Saturday that they have until Sunday to lodge any more complaints about the vote, state-run media reported. Moussavi is still demanding that the Guardian Council annul the election results, and has requested an independent investigation of the election. "I suggest that the issue be referred to a legitimate legal and independent mediation body that is acceptable by all the candidates and supported by those grand sources of emulation who have been advocating the resolution of this issue," an open letter to the Guardian Council attributed to Moussavi said Saturday on the candidate's Web site, Ghalam news. The Anarchist International has not been able to verify the authenticity of the post. Meanwhile, the Guardian Council called on "all political and religious figures to voice their queries and present any documents on alleged irregularities," according to comments Saturday from council spokesman Abbasali Kadkhodaie, who was quoted by state-run Press TV. "Mehdi Karrubi and Mir Hossein Moussavi have 24 hours to come into council in person and introduce their representatives," a Press TV anchor reported on air Saturday, referring to the two candidates who contend the vote results are fraudulent.
Later thousands demonstrate silently in Tehran. About 5,000 protesters marched slowly and silently through Tehran on Sunday near a mosque where the government was allowing a demonstration for the first time in days. Authorities were riding on motorcycles alongside the marchers, who are telling each other to walk slowly and drag their feet. Police were telling the demonstrators to move faster. Some of the protesters were telling the police that they have the legal right to protest in peace. The marchers are walking from north to south down a major street, Shariati Street, near the Ghoba Mosque, where a memorial is being held in honor of Mohammad Beheshti. It follows two weeks of protests against the fascist regime and the official results of the June 12 presidential elections. There was heavy police presence outside the mosque about half an hour before the demonstration was scheduled to begin. Most of the people outside the mosque seemed to be Moussavi supporters who had heard he was going to be there. There was however no sign of the opposition leader, and police were telling crowds to move along, which they did. There was no violence. The anarchists welcome the non-ochlarchical, peaceful demonstration, and call for more protests and a velvet revolution in Iran, moving the system in libertarian direction.
Even later at least 1,000 opposition supporters are reported to have staged a noisy rally outside a mosque in Tehran on Sunday evening before it was broken up by police and militia. Riot police used tear gas and clubs to disperse the crowd outside the Ghoba Mosque, Iranian eyewitnesses said. The report could not be independently verified because of reporting restrictions on foreign media. The anarchists condemn the ochlarchy, if any... Although authorities allowed Sunday's demonstration they intensified their crackdown over the weekend, reportedly seizing wounded protesters from their hospital beds.
Iranian protesters shouting slogans during a gathering in Tehran on Sunday.
29.06.2009. Iran frees five from UK embassy. Five out of nine local staff from the UK embassy detained in Tehran have been released, Iranian officials say. On Sunday, the European Union warned Iran that "harassment or intimidation" of embassy staff would be met with a "strong and collective" response. The anarchists agree! Separately, Iran's top legislative body began a partial recount of the poll - a move rejected by defeated opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi. Iran's state TV said the recount had started on Monday in the capital Tehran as well as in the provinces. Iran's Guardian Council has offered to recount a random 10% of the votes from the election. The process was expected to be completed later on Monday and the result would be announced shortly afterwards, al-Alam television said. But Mr Mousavi insists the poll was rigged and therefore should be annulled. On Sunday, Mr Mousavi met members of a committee set up by the Guardian Council to examine the disputed poll, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported. It said Mr Mousavi was expected to present his proposal on the issue, without giving any further details.
Ahmadinejad: Neda's death is 'suspicious'. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday called the death of Neda Agha-Soltan "suspicious" and urged the country's authorities to identify those responsible for it, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported Monday. The 26-year-old's death has come to symbolize Iranian resistance against the fascist system and government's official election results, since it was captured on amateur video. The shaky video of her death -- probably made on a cell phone -- shows her walking with a man near an anti-government demonstration. The two were near where protesters were chanting in opposition to Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Within hours after the video had been posted online June 20, she had become the iconic victim of the Iranian government crackdown. But Iran has been pushing back against eyewitness reports that she was shot by pro-government Basij militiamen, a fascist gang, perched on a rooftop near a demonstration. Ahmadinejad told the head of Iran's judiciary, Ayatollah Hashemi Shahroudi, to probe the incident and make the results of his investigations public, Fars reported Monday, nine days after Agha-Soltan was killed. The anarchists fear there will be new lies from the fascist system.
Iran deadline nears without election complaint filed. No Iranian presidential candidates had filed complaints as a Monday deadline approached in the country's disputed presidential election, state-run Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting reported. The powerful conservative Guardian Council last week extended the deadline for filing complaints after two candidates -- Mir Hossein Moussavi and Mehdi Karroubi -- questioned the legitimacy of the June 12 vote count. Separately, the council -- a body of judges and religious scholars that oversees elections -- ordered a "partial recount of 10 percent of random ballot boxes across the country," government-funded Press TV reported Monday. "The order has been made following the hesitation of representatives of ... Moussavi and an ineffective joint meeting between certain members of the special committee of the Guardian Council and Moussavi," the office of the council's spokesman said on Monday. The office said the results would be announced, but didn't say when. Moussavi rejected the offer of a partial recount and refused to appoint a representative to the committee, according to Press TV. The anarchists call for more non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations and a velvet revolution in Iran, moving the system in libertarian direction.
Later Iran's election oversight body on Monday as expected declared the hotly disputed presidential vote to be valid after a partial recount, rejecting opposition allegations of fraud and trying to further silencing calls for a new vote. State television reported that the Guardian Council presented the conclusion in a letter to the Interior Minister following a recount of a what was described as a randomly selected 10 percent of the almost 40 million ballots cast June 12. Press TV said "few or no errors" were found. As mentioned opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi claims he, not incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was the rightful winner and has called for a new election, something the government has repeatedly said it will not do. The Guardian Council and the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei have a huge credibility gap with their own people as to the election process, the anarchists say: And we don't think that's going to disappear by any finding of a limited review of a relatively small number of ballots.
Mousavi supporters and people in opposition to the fascist regime in general have taken to the streets in protest after the election, outraged by official results that gave Ahmadinejad the victory by a roughly 2-1 margin. Police and the feared Basij militia fascist gang, have taken increasingly harsh measures against the demonstrators, prompting widespread international criticism, including from anarchists.
The recount conducted Monday had appeared to be an attempt to cultivate the image that Iran was seriously addressing fraud claims, while giving no ground in the clampdown on opposition. Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the Council already had pronounced the results free of major fraud and insisted that Ahmadinejad won by a landslide. And even if errors were found in nearly every one of the votes in the recount Ahmadinejad, according to the government's count, still would have tallied more votes than Mousavi.
News of the partial recount comes as Ahmadinejad on Monday ordered an investigation of the killing of a young woman on the fringes of a protest. Widely circulated video footage of Neda Agha Soltan bleeding to death on a Tehran street sparked outrage worldwide over authorities' harsh response to demonstrations. Ahmadinejad's Web site said Soltan was slain by "unknown agents and in a suspicious" way, convincing him that "enemies of the nation" were responsible. The regime has implicated protesters and even foreign intelligence agents in Soltan's death. But an Iranian doctor who said he tried to save her told the BBC last week she apparently was shot by a member of the volunteer Basij militia. Protesters spotted an armed member of the militia on a motorcycle, and stopped and disarmed him, Dr. Arash Hejazi said. Basij commander Hossein Taeb on Monday alleged that armed impostors were posing as militia members, Iran's state-run English-language satellite channel Press TV reported. This impostors myth is not true, the anarchists declare.
The developments appear to show that Iran's leaders are concerned about international anger -- including from anarchists -- over the election and opposition against the fascist regime at home that could be sustained and widespread - but is falsely trying to portray the country as victimized by foreign powers.
Throughout the postelection turmoil, Iranian officials have bristled at even mild criticism from abroad. But the tensions escalated Sunday when Iran announced it had detained nine local employees of the British Embassy on suspicion of fomenting or aiding protests. Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hasan Qashqavi said Monday that five of the Iranian embassy staffers had been released and the remaining four were being interrogated. Intelligence Minister Gholam Hossein Mohseini Ejehi Monday claimed he had videotape showing some of the employees mingling with protesters, and said the fate of those who remain in custody now rests with the court system in a country where supreme leader, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's word is law. This court system is not fair, the anarchists declare.
Qashqavi played down the dispute, saying officials were in written and verbal contact with British Foreign Secretary David Miliband and that Iran had dismissed the idea of downgrading relations, saying "Reduction of diplomatic ties is not on our agenda for any country, including Britain." The statement did not mollify Britain, whose Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Monday that Iran's actions were "unacceptable, unjustified and without foundation." Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi said Group of Eight leaders meeting next week in Italy will discuss possible sanctions against Iran. The anarchists support such sanctions.
Ejehi boasted that Iran had overcome attempts at an uprising like the Velvet Revolution, the peaceful 1989 mass demonstrations that brought down then-Czechoslovakia's Communist regime. "I can surely say that such a thing will not happen in our country. But if the question is whether the enemy was after this or not, the answer is that it certainly was," he said in remarks shown on state television. The battle is not over, the anarchists declare: The anarchists call for more non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations and a velvet revolution in Iran, moving the system in libertarian direction. Non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations against the fascist regime are not illegal according to the Iranian Constitution and universal human rights, the anarchists repeat: Thus such demonstrations should continue! There are many protest methods that the arch-enemy of the people, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his fascist regime, have problems to repress...
Later reports say there were new demonstrations on Monday in central Tehran, with some clashes between opposition demonstrators trying to form a human chain and security forces...
An anarchist declaration on the situation: Iran's crisis since the presidential election has taken the Islamic Republic into new and unknown territory economical and political/administrative. All sorts of red lines have been crossed, with unprecedented public condemnation of the supreme leader, the arch-enemy of the people, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamanei. Iran has been left with a divided ruling elite that has been having a public quarrel. During the mass rallies a broad-based opposition coalition emerged. It did not have effective anarchist organization, so the authorities were partly able to take the initiative back, helped by a security crackdown with murders, and hundreds, some say several thousand, arrests. The people who took to the streets are still angry about what happened, and the authorities fear that anger, because it could explode again. The protests continue and will continue in the months and years to come. Turn the back against the criminal authorities! Iran will never be the same!
30.06.2009. Iran hardliner says election protests must cease - but it is free to protest against the fascist regime, the anarchists say. A senior hardline Iranian cleric, Ahmad Khatami, Tuesday demanded an end to protests over the re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as president after Iran's top legislative body slammed shut the last door for a legal challenge. A statement on Mousavi's website Tuesday did not comment directly on the 12-man body's ruling, but referred to the former prime minister's letter to the Guardian Council Saturday in which he repeated his demand for the election to be annulled. Hamid Najafi, editor-in-chief of the conservative Kayhan International daily, said Mousavi could take no further action. "As far as the constitution is concerned...I don't think he can do anything," Najafi said: "It is over, finished." But as mentioned, the battle is not over... The anarchists call for more non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations against the fascist regime and for a velvet revolution in Iran, moving the system in libertarian direction. Non-ochlarchical, peaceful, demonstrations against the fascist regime are not illegal according to the Iranian Constitution and universal human rights, the anarchists repeat: Thus such demonstrations should continue! There are many protest methods that the arch-enemy of the people, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his fascist regime, have problems to repress... direct actions! The focus should be shifted more towards a general protest against the fascist regime - and for a velvet revolution. The anarchists call for more actions - but not riots and ochlarchy.
Examples of direct actions, strategy, etc.: The Iranian fascist regime knows that it faces a crisis of legitimacy, with large parts of society refusing to recognize Mr Nobody Ahmadinejad as president and the arch-enemy of the people, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamanei as leader. The power struggle within the top of the system too will persist, with backers of Mr Moussavi looking for ways to undermine both Mr Nobody Ahmadinejad and the supreme leader, the arch-enemy of the people, the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamanei, himself. There is likely to be trouble within the system and outside it. Iranians will be watching for tensions during parliament's confirmation of cabinet ministers picked by Mr Nobody Ahmadinejad. Even when he was legitimately elected in 2005, he had a difficult time getting his choices approved. Given the president's inclination for unilateral, and often reckless economic decisions, another risk he faces is that the business community and workers' unions could be more emboldened to stand up to him, provoking fresh waves of unrest, strikes, etc.
Having decided to fall back on claims of a western conspiracy, the regime now has to battle with the world community as well. Europe has been infuriated with the arrest of the UK embassy's local staff in Tehran. US enthusiasm for engagement with Iran has significantly waned. Anarchists and rights groups call for actions internationally. Tehran may have declared the crisis over. But it is not. Iran's angry opposition is not out. The youth who see Mr Moussavi as their rightful president, and has turned against the fascist system, will taunt the regime, and they might hold smaller protests. The July 9 anniversary of the 1999 student rioting, the last major unrest in Iran, could be an occasion for new demonstrations. The end of the 40-day mourning period for Neda, the student who became the face of the repression, is another, etc. On Mr Moussavi's Facebook page (where the number of fans has swelled to more than 100,000) his supporters are calling for the withdrawal of deposits from state banks and boycotting of products advertised on state media. The anarchists are also suggesting more fleeting street protests, staged for just a few minutes in busy spots like metro stations, short sit-ins, etc. And above all -- show -- and turn the back against the authorities at all relevant occasions... The battle for a velvet revolutionary change is not over.
01.07.2009. Presidential candidate Mehdi Karoubi: "I don't consider this government as legitimate and I will continue my fight ..." Iranians disputed president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has cancelled his trip to an African Union summit in Libya, officials in Tehran say. Iran's Foreign Ministry said unspecified "preoccupations" kept the president at home. His visit would have been one of his first major public appearances abroad since his re-election in Iran's disputed poll last month. Some African Union officials had feared that Mr Ahmadinejad's appearance at the three-day summit could have overshadowed the African issues on the agenda.
As mentioned on Monday, Iran's top electoral body, the Guardian Council, confirmed Mr Ahmadinejad's victory after a partial recount. His main challenger, Mir Hossein Mousavi, has said the whole election should be annulled and held again. Iran's feared Basij militia, a fascist gang, 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. "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.
In another sign of a tightening government clampdown on anyone challenging the fascist system, 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". 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 the system. 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. Late on Tuesday, he issued a harshly worded statement that blasted the government and pledged to continue challenging its authority. Karroubi's political group, the National Confidence Party, said the newspaper was shut down in response. Mehdi Karoubi, at his party's website said. "I don't consider this government as legitimate and I will continue my fight ... using every means..." and vowing to "stand by the people and the revolution, until the end of my life." Karrubi called the actions of the government before and after the controversial June 12 voting "the foundation for the annulment of the elections," according to a copy of his letter on the party newspaper's Web site. "I will not recognize the legitimacy of the government which has resulted from this process," Karrubi said in the letter. The 72-year-old cleric also said he "will not participate in any of its processes, in any way" and said he is "ready to cooperate with pro-change people and groups." Karrubi's party, Etemed Melli, said Iran's Ministry of Culture and its attorney general prevented the publication of its newspaper because it carried the letter.
The semiofficial news agency Fars said on Wednesday that one of three local British embassy staff in detention had had a "remarkable role" in last month's post-election unrest in the Islamic Republic. This is probably a myth, the anarchists say. The fight for a velvet revolutionary change continues...
Iran releases more British embassy staff. Three more British Embassy staffers arrested by Iran have been released, Tehran's government-funded Press TV reported Wednesday. One staff member remains in detention. Five other Iranians who worked for the British Embassy were released earlier this week, an Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said Monday. Britain's Foreign Office in London would not comment on the latest report. "We won't get into the running commenting on numbers, we still have people detained," said the spokeswoman, who declined to be named because of standard policy. "It is unacceptable that they are being held and we want them all released. Allegations against them are unfounded."
Europe weighs withdrawing ambassadors from Tehran. Iran courted new levels of post-election isolation from the European Union Wednesday as European diplomats pondered whether to withdraw the ambassadors of all 27 members nations in a dispute over the detention of British Embassy local personnel. European diplomats said no formal decision to order their envoys home had been taken but the measures was an option under consideration as the European Union — Iran's biggest trading partner — tries to work out how to defuse the dispute in a way that would shield other embassies in Tehran from similar action. The initial Iranian response seemed characteristically bellicose. A high-ranking military official demanded that the Europeans apologize for interference in Iran's affairs which, he said, disqualified European countries from negotiating on the fraught issue of Iran's nuclear ambitions. Many in the west suspect that Iran is seeking the ability to build nuclear weapons.
Carl Bildt, the foreign minister of Sweden, told reporters in Stockholm on Wednesday — the day his country took over the rotating presidency of the European Union — that it was in the interests of both the European Union and Iran to retain full diplomatic ties. But he did specifically exclude the withdrawal of ambassadors, saying that "from the diplomatic perspective, all options are on the table." As mentioned in a statement on Sunday, European foreign ministers promised a "strong and collective response" to the diplomatic crisis in Tehran. That led to discussions among senior European diplomats in Brussels on Tuesday. Separate talks among European officials are set to take place in Stockholm on Thursday and Brussels on Friday, a European diplomat said. The discussions covered a series of possible measures including the withdrawal of ambassadors or a warning that envoys will be called home if Iran does not meet a deadline to release the detained local officials, the diplomat said, speaking in return for anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.
Coup d'etat atmosphere. Ahmadinejad's main political rival, Mir Hossein Moussavi, released a statement Wednesday criticizing the government and its crackdown on the media, which he said has created a "bitter, coup d'etat atmosphere" in Iran. "We will stand firmly in order to preserve this valuable accomplishment [revolution]," Moussavi said. "Unless we succeed in this, this government will not have legitimacy. The system and the heritage of the Islamic revolution are the fruits of our 200-year-old struggle against oppression." In his statement, Moussavi called for the release of jailed reformists and said he will participate in the creation of a "legal organization" that will release proof of fraud in the June 12 presidential election, and take its case to the courts. He said the current political issue is a "family dispute" and cautioned against asking for outside help, warning, "We will regret it." "Many" have asked Moussavi to end his struggle and "close my eyes," but he warned, "If we do not stand our grounds now, then we will have no guarantees that we won't be at this exact point in the future, face to face with the bitter events of this election."
At least 20 protesters were killed in the chaos and more than 1,000 were detained in Tehran, the head of Iranian internal security forces Brig. Esmaeil Ahmadi said, according to Iranian state-run media reports on Wednesday. The actual death toll may be higher, but restrictions on media have made it difficult to verify.
Human Rights Watch on Wednesday called on Iran to release prominent Iranian reformist Saeed Hajjarian, who has been imprisoned since June 15. He is one of several jailed reformists accused of orchestrating the post-election violence in Iran. Hajjarian, 55, was severely disabled after he was shot in the head in a 2000 assassination attempt that left him confined to a wheelchair with severe brain and spinal cord injuries. His wife, Vajiheh Marsoussi, is a physician and has visited Hajjarian in Tehran's Evin prison. She told Human Rights Watch that his medical condition was "deteriorating severely."
Keep up the struggle! Iran's former reformist President Mohammad Khatami called on Iranians to keep up the struggle, noting that "all doors are not yet closed." "We must not lose our social capital this easily," Khatami told progressive Iranian newspaper Tahile Rouz. "I know Moussavi as one of the faithful, original and valuable capitals of our revolution, and considered his return to the political scene as a great chance." The anarchists repeat: The fight for a velvet revolutionary change continues...
03.07.2009. A velvet revolution is a change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction without significant ochlarchy. It will happen. The protests continue and will probably result in a velvet revolution sooner or later...
Europe has promised a tough, unified response to the arrest of local staff at the British embassy in Iran, who are falsely accused of fomenting the recent post-election unrest. All 27 EU countries summoned Iranian ambassadors in protest at Tehran's treatment of the embassy workers, as Iran falsely blamed the West for the protests following last month's disputed vote. Iran ratcheted up the tension further today, with a powerful cleric saying the staff would face trial for their alleged actions.
"Do you in the West expect Iran to become like Ukraine and Georgia with street protests after the election then a velvet revolution; a system to be toppled and a government, directed by you, to take over? Your idiocy and stupidity are really limitless," said Ayatollah Ahmed Jannati, Head of Iran's Guardian Council. A velvet revolution is a change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction without significant ochlarchy, a change to a less top heavy pyramid in rank and/or income, not necessarily as in Ukraine or Georgia. The anarchists again call for a velvet revolution in Iran, and it is not stupid or idiotic. The protests continue... and will continue in the months and years ahead, until a velvet revolution happens. Middle and working class protesters took to the streets after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's victory, prompting a crackdown by police and denunciation from religious figures. About a million demonstrated against the present system - the hierarchy's contra-revolutionary crackdown has so far just affected about a thousand protesters... There are still about 999 000 active protesters left...
05.07.2009. Clerics: How can the next government be recognized as legitimate? A pro-reform Iranian clerical group said on Sunday the outcome of last month's presidential vote was "invalid," even though Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has upheld the result. In a sign of a deepening rift among Shi'ite clerics, the Assembly of Qom Seminary Scholars and Researchers also called for the release of Iranians arrested in protests after the hardline president was declared winner of the June 12 vote. "Other candidates' complaints and strong evidence of vote-rigging were ignored ... peaceful protests by Iranians were violently oppressed ... dozens of Iranians were killed and hundreds were illegally arrested," said a statement published on the Assembly's website. "The outcome is invalid." Qom is Iran's center of Shi'ite learning, about 80 miles south of Tehran. The assembly has little political influence but its statement is a significant act of defiance since Qom is the power base of the clerical establishment. While some clerics, such as Ayatollah Mohammad Mesbah Yazdi, are aligned with hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, at least two grand ayatollahs, dissident Hossein Ali Montazeri and moderate Yusof Saanei, had already criticized the authorities. "With all these problems, how can the result be recognized as legitimate? How can the next government be recognized as legitimate," the Qom assembly statement said.
Two losing moderate candidates, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi, have also said Ahmadinejad's next cabinet would be illegitimate. "A government which lacks people's backing does not have legitimacy ... Our fight will continue," Karoubi said in a statement published on his website on Sunday. The hardline Kayhan newspaper said in an editorial: "Mousavi and his supporters are dangerous opposition for the establishment." Hossein Shariatmadari, a top aide to Khamenei, called on Saturday for Mousavi and former reformist President Mohammad Khatami to be tried for committing "terrible crimes." What crimes? the anarchists ask.
Meanwhile, the head of Iran's judiciary called on Sunday for the prosecution of people working for increasingly influential anti-establishment satellite TV channels and websites, state television reported. "The daily growth of anti-regime satellite channels and ... websites needs serious measures to confront this phenomenon," it quoted a circular issued by Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi-Shahroudi as saying. The circular, addressed to branches of the judiciary, called for judicial personnel to be assigned to deal with such violations. "Those who cooperate with such websites and television channels will face prosecution," Hashemi-Shahroudi said. Arrest the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the criminal top of his fascist regime and gangs, the anarchists say.
09.07.2009. Big demonstration Thursday. "Death to the Dictator!" "Death to Khamenei!" Iranian pro-government Basij militia members dispersed crowds of protesters here Thursday -- sometimes with force -- witnesses said. An estimated 2,000 to 3,000 people crowded the streets in different locations of the city, and headed toward Tehran University, the site of a student uprising in 1999. Several protesters were hit on the arms and backs by the Basij, pro-government militia members, while elsewhere riot police released tear gas into crowds. Iran's state-funded Press TV described the crowd size near the university in the hundreds, a lie. Some of the protesters shouted "Allah u Akbar," or "God is Great" and "Ya Hussein, Mir Hussein" referring to opposition candidate Mir Hossein Moussavi, the witnesses said. Police blocked roads leading to Tehran University, while some protesters set trash cans afire so smoke would counter the effects of the tear gas. When crowds tried to gather between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. in Revolution Square, hundreds of security forces were waiting for them, witnesses said. Most of the security forces were uniformed officers wearing helmets and holding batons and shields, though many wore plain clothes. The forces ordered bystanders to move along, the witnesses said. There were at least five reports of clashes during this time. Over the next two hours, the crowds grew to around 3,000, but witnesses said security forces grew too. Many of the protesters left Revolution Square and marched to side streets and neighborhoods a few kilometers away. Many held up victory signs and clapped.
The contents of several Dumpsters were set afire. Witnesses said they heard several pops that sounded like gunshots and saw security forces fire what appeared to be pepper spray towards the crowds on several occasions. Some of the chants heard Thursday were familiar refrains that have been repeated often in recent days: "Death to the Dictator!" "Death to Khamenei!" But a new phrase entered the lexicon on Thursday that referred to Mojtaba, the son of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamanei: "Mojtaba bemire, rahbariroh nagiri," they chanted: "Die, Mojtaba, so you don't become the supreme leader!" During the past week, rumors have surfaced that Mojtaba has taken over the pro- government Basij militia and that his father is grooming him to be the next supreme leader. Thursday marked the first time protesters chanted against him. By nightfall, most of the demonstrators headed home. The demonstration took place on the 10th anniversary of a student uprising that posed a major threat to the Islamic regime. On Thursday, the protesters used the anniversary to resume demonstrations against the outcome of the contested June 12 presidential election. On July 9, 1999, known in the Iranian calendar as the 18th of Tir, 200 students protested the closing of a reformist newspaper, Salaam, which supported moderate President Mohammed Khatami. Hard-line activists entered dormitories in Tehran University, broke windows, set fires and attacked students. Six days of protests ensued. According to Human Rights Watch, more than 25,000 people participated, making the demonstrations the biggest threat to the Islamic regime since its inception in 1979.
18.07.2009. The protests continue. The anarchists once more call for a velvet revolution. 19.07.2009. The government detained 40 on Friday after police clashed with thousands of protesters in the biggest opposition show of strength in weeks, the semiofficial Fars news agency reported Sunday 19. Some of those arrested were eventually released, it said. The clashes followed a sermon by one of Iran's most powerful clerics, former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who criticized the government's response to the election dispute. Rafsanjani, speaking publicly for the first time since the election, denounced the government's violent crackdown against protesters and demanded the release of those detained. Instead of suppression, he said the government should work to address the concerns Iranians have over the legitimacy of the vote. The sermon was a direct challenge to Khamenei and his hard-line supporters, who have said the election was fair and have called on opposition supporters to drop their claims of vote fraud. The protest movement and the split it has caused within the highest reaches of Iran's clerical hierarchy have presented Khamenei with the country's greatest challenge since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
20.07.2009. The Iranian fascist system is insecure. Anarchy is stable. Iran's supreme leader warned the political opposition Monday not to "direct the society toward insecurity." Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has warned the opposition to consider their approach in Iran. "You are being tested. And failing this test will not only mean your failure, it would also mean your fall," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in his remarks to leaders, according to text released by the government-run Islamic Republic News Agency. The top heavy pyramid of the Iranian fascist system is opposed to the people, seen as a class in contrast to the superiors in rank and/or income, and thus insecure. The most responsible for the insecurity is the arch-criminal Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the arch-enemy of the people. The anarchists must remind Khamenei that the most stable system in the world is the Anarchy of Norway, according to the American journal Foreign Policy (2009) and IIFOR's research. To make a more stable Iran it is necessary to decrease the authortitarian degree, i.e. a velvet revolution in libertarian direction. The protests will continue until that happens... and Ali Khamenei will fall if he is against!!!
Call for referendum. Iran's former president, Mohammad Khatami, has called for a referendum on the legitimacy of the government. His intervention challenges the country's supreme leader who supports the outcome of June's disputed presidential election. It comes following last Fridays violence in central Tehran after another former president, Hashemi Rafsanjani, declared that the Islamic Republic is in crisis. The anarchists condemn the violence. Khatami's decision to echo Rafsanjani shows an unwillingness of the reformist camp to go quietly despite the security crackdown and the arrests of at least hundreds of people. Human rights groups claim senior pro-reform politicians, journalists, activists and lawyers have been taken into custody since the poll.
21.07.2009. The political crisis in Iran has flared yet again with reports that further clashes have broken out in Tehran between authorities and pro-change protesters. Eyewitnesses said hundreds of riot police and plainclothes Basij fascist gangs had beaten and detained dozens of people. The latest violence follows yesterday's challenge from former president Mohammad Khatami over the vote and the legitimacy of the government. Witnesses said hundreds or even thousands of people took to the streets of Tehran on Tuesday afternoon, although curbs on the international media mean it is difficult to verify reports from Iran independently. In a new form of protest, activists were urged to turn off lights and domestic appliances at 20.55 (16.25 GMT). They planned to switch on five minutes later appliances that consume large amounts of electricity, such as irons, toasters and microwave ovens. Activist spokespersons hoped the resulting surge in demand could cause a power outage and cloak Tehran in darkness, allowing some the chance to protest on the streets. The power protest is the latest in a series of efforts to continue demonstrating without breaking the law or risking arrest.
The renewed street protests come shortly after Mr Mousavi issued one of his strongest critiques of Iran's ruling elite since the election result was declared. He said it was an insult to the nation to suggest that opposition members were only protesting because they were told to by foreign powers. And he insisted that intimidation and threats would not silence his supporters. As mentioned on Monday Mr Khatami called for a referendum on the legitimacy of the government. Only the arch-enemy of the poeple, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, however, can organize a referendum, and he has already declared the election result valid. Mr Khatami, quoted on Iranian websites, said millions of Iranians had lost faith in the electoral process. But Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard, which answers to Khamenei, has described the election as a turning point. The head of the Guards' political bureau said the election allowed the Guards to take power into their own hands. Many Iranians will see the Revolutionary Guards' confidence as confirming their own fears that the outcome of the election was just a thinly-veiled military coup.
22.07.2009. Brown Card to Mir Hossein Mousavi. Mousavi said Wednesday he would soon unveil a new "charter" to "make the neglected parts of the constitution functional." He also stressed the need to act within the law. "If we move out of the constitution's framework then we would face uncontrollable anarchy," he said on his Web site. The authorities have falsely portrayed the opposition protests as the work of "rioters" backed by Iran's Western enemies. There is no such thing as "uncontrollable anarchy", anarchy is real democracy, self-controlled by the people, as in the Anarchy of Norway. Anarchy is not lawlessness. IAT-APT gives Mousavi a Brown Card, for spreading this disinformation.
23.07.2009. Mir Hossein Mousavi has confirmed plans to form a new broad-based political front. Mr Mousavi has made it clear that the new front will not be a substitute for popular protest, but a way of giving the Green movement - as it has become known - a legal political framework. The front is likely to attract the support not just of reformists but of disaffected centrists and conservatives. Mr Mousavi stressed the need to stay within the law. Writing on his website, he said the front would have a charter and would give the opposition a legal framework.
24.07.2009. The anarchists once more call for a velvet revolution, as explained above. A Green movement without this aim is nothing!
25.07.2009. Global day of action. Protesters in dozens of cities worldwide on Saturday demanded the release of hundreds of detainees in Iran who were arrested in the bloody aftermath of the disputed presidential election. Saturday's global day of action across about 100 cities in six continents was organized by United For Iran and supported by anarchists and several human rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Reporters Without Borders. United For Iran said it wants UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to send a delegation to Iran to investigate the fate of political prisoners; the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, including journalists; an end to state-sponsored violence; freedom of the press and Iran's adherence to international agreements it has signed. The anarchists support these demands of United For Iran. The anarchists say this is an international solidarity action, not intervention by foreign powers!
Also hundreds of Iranians gathered in north Tehran's Vanak and Mirdamad districts and chanted "death to the dictator" and "we want our vote back" before they were attacked and beaten by police and pro-government fascist gangs. The demonstration was a response to the demonstrations around the world in solidarity with Iranians imprisoned in the crackdown. As night fell, Iranians across the city gathered on their rooftops and chanted "death to the dictator" and "courageous neighbors, thank you for your support." While the rooftop chanting had been common feature in the immediate aftermath of the elections, it had largely disappeared in recent weeks.
27.07.2009. Gathering Thursday? Mir Hossein Mousavi said on Monday the pro-reform protests which erupted after the country's disputed June presidential vote will continue, his website reported. "The pro-reform path will continue," Mousavi said in a statement. "The establishment should respect the constitution and let us to gather to commemorate our killed loved ones on Thursday."
30.07.2009. Mass gathering. Iranian police fired tear gas and beat anti-government protesters with batons to disperse thousands at a graveside memorial Thursday for victims of post-election violence, witnesses and state television said. "Death to the dictator", "Neda is alive, Ahmadinejad is dead," some of the protesters chanted. The memorial service marked the end of the 40-day mourning period under Islam for 10 people killed in protests and clashes on June 20, including Soltan. The memorial presses the government on an issue that has increasingly caused it trouble the past week - allegations the crackdown that crushed the protests following the disputed election has gotten out of control. Iran's powerful fascist gangs, the Revolutionary Guard and its allied Basij militia have adopted a zero-tolerance policy, but demonstrators have still managed to hold several, smaller protests in recent weeks. The protests will continue...
01.08.2009. Iran reformers slate trial 'sham'. Iran's biggest reformist party has dismissed the court appearance of 100 people, including leading opposition figures, as a "laughable show trial". The accused are on trial for alleged involvement in post-election violence, on charges including acting against national security and vandalism. Pro-government media reported what they said were confessions by some of the leading reformists. But the party, Mosharekat, said the "confessions" had been forced. It said "even a cooked chicken" would laugh at the charges. The party was the principal backer of Mir Hossein Mousavi, the main opposition candidate in the 12 June presidential elections. Meanwhile on his website Mr Mousavi rejected the authorities' claims that Western countries had fuelled the post-election unrest.
Iran's leadership wants to send a message to stop any more protests. But judging from messages on micro-blogging site twitter and the internet, the move may have the opposite effect, with several people talking about the need for new demonstrations and calling those on trial "national heroes". Some of the defendants told the court their earlier claims of fraud during the 12 June poll were baseless, official media said. Former vice-president Mohammad Ali Abtahi said that the aim was to create a "velvet revolution", referring to the overthrow of communism in Czechoslovakia in 1989. At the trial, pictures from the packed courtroom showed seated defendants wearing prison uniforms and with guards next to them. Official news agency Irna said other charges against the accused included "having ties with counter-revolutionary groups", rioting and conspiring against the ruling system.
The defendants included supporters of opposition leaders Mr Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi - both defeated in the election - and aides of former reformist president Mohammad Khatami. Fars news agency reported that former deputy foreign minister Mohsen Aminzadeh, former government spokesman Abdollah Ramazanzadeh, former senior lawmaker Mohsen Mirdamadi and former Industry Minister Behzad Nabavi were among the defendants.
02.08.2009. Euronews reports: The Iranian government has tightened the screws on its opponents by staging what moderate former President Mohammad Khatami called a "show trial." 100 reformists, including senior officials, stand accused of trying to instigate a so called "velvet revolution". Many of the defendants had spent weeks in jail without access to lawyers. The trial is seen as the latest shot in the government's campaign to dampen the flames of defiance by those who claim the presidential election on the 12th of June was rigged to ensure the reelection of hardline incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Khatami insists the trial violated Iran's constitution. He said that such show trials will directly damage the system and increase public distrust. On his website Khatami asserted that Iranians' rights have been violated through vote rigging. Even some hardliners have criticized the trial and the official portrayal of the protestors as intent on overthrowing the system. The aftermath of the election has highlighted deep cracks within Iran's clerical and political elite. Velvet revolution is not criminal, but a natural development of a system, i.e. changing the coordinates in libertarian direction...
03.08.2009. Protests in Iran as Ahmadinejad endorsed. Chaos within the government. Hundreds of Iranians took to the streets in Tehran Monday night, hours after the country's supreme leader endorsed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for a second term in office. Eyewitnesses and sources in the capital city said the crowds marched on the sidewalks around Vannak Square and Vali Asr Avenue, under the watchful eye of hundreds of Iranian "security forces", i.e. fascist gangs. Some protesters chanted "Death to the dictator," while others said "God is great." Security vehicles blocked many of the roads leading to Vannak Square, while riot police and members of the pro-government Basij militia, fascists gangs, patrolled the area on foot and on motorcycles. One witness said he saw three people detained and taken away in a vehicle. Senior Iranian political figures appear to have snubbed the formal endorsement of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as president by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. His predecessors as president, Mohammad Khatami and Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, did not attend the ceremony. Also missing were the two opposition candidates defeated in June's election - that was mired in claims of rigging - Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi. BBC tells about reports of "chaos" within the government...
05.08.2009. Protests in Iran as Ahmadinejad sworn in. He "will guard the power." With hundreds of protesters gathering and riot police out in force to meet them on the streets of Tehran, hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad took the oath of office Wednesday, beginning a second term in a bitterly divided Iran. Ahmadinejad, 52, was formally sworn in before Iran's parliament, known as the Majlis, as security forces guarded the building and the streets nearby in anticipation of protests. Witnesses reported a heavy police presence, including members of the pro-government Basij militia, all fascist gangs, and several choppers hovering overhead. Some reported protesters, many of them women, sitting in front of the parliament building's entrance.
As discontent surfaced yet again, Ahmadinejad vowed to take Iran forward and flung sharp words at those who questioned the validity of the June 12 elections, in which he was declared the winner with almost two-thirds of the vote. He took particular aim at the United States, Britain, France, Italy and Germany, which have not sent formal letters of congratulations to Ahmadinejad. When asked on Tuesday whether the White House recognizes Ahmadinejad as the rightful leader of Iran, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs replied only with this: "He's the elected leader." Among those attending Wednesday's ceremony were Iran's top lawmakers, the heads of the three branches of government, the secretary of the Guardian Council and foreign diplomats. But as the camera of the semi-official Press TV panned the hall, an unprecedented number of empty seats were visible. It was unclear whether opposition leaders were boycotting the inauguration. "I will guard the power that the people have entrusted in me as the sacred trust," Ahmadinejad said. "I will safeguard it like an honest and faithful trustee."
08.08.2009. Second trial. A young French academic and local staff of the British and French embassies stood trial Saturday with dozens of Iranian opposition figures and confessed to being involved in the country's postelection unrest. Iran's opposition and rights groups have condemned the trial as a sham and say such confessions are coerced and scripted. Britain, which seemed caught off guard by the appearance of its embassy employee, called it an outrage, while France demanded the immediate release of its citizen. Saturday's second hearing at Tehran's Revolutionary Court involved a new group of detainees and focused on testimony from the French academic and the two other foreign-linked defendants, demonstrating the government's resolve to taint Iran's pro-reform movement as a tool of foreign countries - particularly Britain and the United States. The prosecutor accused the two countries of fomenting the unrest in an attempt to engineer a "soft overthrow" of the government. This is a lie, the anarchists say.
09.08.2009. No velvet revolution so far. "If Mousavi, Karoubi and Khatami are main suspects behind the 'soft revolution' in Iran, which they are, we expect the judiciary ... to go after them, arrest them, put them on trial and punish them," said Yadollah Javani, head of the Revolution Guard's political unit, the official IRNA news agency reported. The mass trials are seen as sign hardliners feel insecure. No 'soft revolution', i.e. velvet revolution, has happened so far. There is no change of the system's coordinates in libertarian direction so far, the anarchists say. The fight for a velvet revolutionary change continues... A velvet revolution is a change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction without significant ochlarchy.
14.08.2009. Iranian ex-MPs challenge Khamenei. A group of former Iranian MPs has appealed to a powerful clerical panel to investigate if Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is fit to rule. The call was made to the Assembly of Experts, which under Iranian law has the power to remove the supreme leader. In a letter, the group denounces the crackdown on protests after June's disputed poll and the resulting trials. Meanwhile a senior cleric has said a reformist leader should be prosecuted for alleging protesters had been raped. Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami said defeated election candidate Mehdi Karroubi's remarks boosted Iran's enemies, particularly the US and Israel. Mr Karroubi has alleged that some protesters - male and female - were raped while detained in prison. He has also said that some were tortured to death. Officials have denied the rape allegations, but have admitted that abuses have taken place. During his sermon at Friday prayers in Tehran, Ayatollah Khatami said Mr Karroubi's claims were "full of libel, a total slander against the Islamic system" and he demanded he be prosecuted. "We expect the Islamic system to show an appropriate response to this," Ayatollah Khatami said. In earlier remarks reported by the Iranian ILNA news agency, he said: "If someone libels the system by saying that rape takes place in prisons, then he must either prove it or, if he cannot, then the system must press charges and the public prosecutor must act."
The content of the letter from the group of former MPs appeared on several opposition websites. The reports did not name any of the group, nor say how many had signed the letter. Addressed to former Iranian President Ali Akbar Rafsanjani, who heads the Assembly of Experts, it demands "a legal probe on the basis of Article 111 of the constitution, which is a responsibility of the Assembly of Experts". The article says that if the supreme leader "becomes incapable of fulfilling his constitutional duties" he will be dismissed. The letter denounced the recent trials of protesters held in Tehran as a "Stalinesque court". It also said Kahrizak prison near Tehran, where much of the alleged abuse of detainees took place, was worse than the US facilities at Abu Ghraib, Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. There has so far been no response from the assembly to the letter. However, even if the call is ignored, it is the most direct challenge to Ayatollah Khamenei so far. The letter breaks a taboo among Iran's political classes against openly challenging the supreme leader, whose position has long been unquestioned. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won June's poll, but opposition leaders and their supporters claimed the election had been rigged. Security forces crushed the mass protests that followed. Hundreds were arrested and opposition leaders say 69 protesters died - more than double the official figure of about 30 fatalities. Arrest the arch-criminal and arch-enemy of the people, Ali Khamenei, the anarchists demand. Ali Khamenei has Neda Agha-Soltan's and other innocents' blood on his hands.
16.08.2009. Third trial. The mass trial of a third round of detainees arrested in the aftermath of Iran's disputed presidential election began on Sunday. Prosecutors read out charges against more than two dozen detainees who are being tried in the Revolutionary Court. The defendants are among more than 1,000 people arrested after the government cracked down on days of street protests following the June 12 election. Authorities arrested reformist politicians, lawyers and journalists and accused them of attempting to overturn government leadership. Among the defendants who have been on trial this month are Seyyed Mohammad Abtahi, a former Iranian vice president; Maziar Bahari, an Iranian-Canadian reporter for Newsweek magazine; and Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American scholar. The anarchists condemn these trials.
17.08.2009. New protests. Iran's prosecutor general ordered the closure Monday of the pro-reform newspaper Etemad-e Melli for "publishing articles against national security and public expedience." The paper had run articles on claims by prominent opposition figure Mahdi Karroubi that some detainees were raped in prison. Karroubi heads the political party that runs the newspaper. The prosecutor gave no word on the length of the closure. Dozens of Karroubi supporters protested the closure, chanting "death to the dictator" during a rally in central Tehran on Monday. Security forces fired tear gas to disperse the protesters, arresting at least 12, according to witnesses, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of government reprisals.
20.08.2009.Hard-line criticism grew against Karroubi. Legal action must be taken against Iranian opposition leader Mehdi Karrubi for claiming post-election detainees were being raped behind bars, said the governor of Tehran province Morteza Tamaddon, as hard-line criticism grew against the reformist.
Iran lawmakers warn of clash over new government. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad submitted a new cabinet purged of critics and packed with loyalists and little-known figures, and lawmakers on Thursday warned it could face a challenge from members of his own conservative camp in parliament.
24.08.2009. Iran reformist unveils case of raped detainee. An Iranian opposition leader on Monday released what he said was an account by a prisoner raped by his jailers in a challenge to the country's leadership which has sought to silence claims of torture and abuses in the postelection crackdown. The allegations of torture and even rapes against imprisoned opposition protesters have become a source of embarrassment to the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Iran's clerical leadership as they try to put behind them the turmoil of the disputed June presidential election. The opposition says at least 69 people were killed in the crackdown, including some who died from torture in prison. In recent weeks, hard-line government supporters have fiercely denounced senior opposition figure Mahdi Karroubi after he announced earlier this month that he had received reports that detainees were raped and tortured to death. On Monday, Karroubi responded by making public for the first time details of one of the accounts. In a statement on his party's Web site, he warned he would release more accounts unless authorities stop denying his claims.
The account is by a released prisoner who had been held in Kahrizak prison, a facility on Tehran's outskirts where many detained protesters were held and which has been at the center of abuse claims. The author of the account is not identified, and he says he fears retribution for authorities. "They blindfolded and handcuffed me in prison, beat me nearly to death. Worse that than, they did to me an act that is denounced even by unbelievers and idol worshippers. I only had the courage to inform Mr. Karroubi of this matter," the former prisoner was quoted by the Web site as saying. The former prisoner says that Karroubi introduced him to judiciary officials, who he said initially interviewed him in a respectful way. He said they took him for an examination by a doctor. But he said he was subsequently questioned by other judiciary officials who tried to force him to retract his claims and accused him of being paid or otherwise induced by Karroubi to make the accusations. The report did not give details on when the prisoner was arrested or freed.
Karroubi has alleged that he has detailed reports from victims, former military commanders and other senior officials about rapes and abuse in the crackdown, as well as about prisoners tortured to death. The abuse issue is particularly sensitive for Ahmadinejad's government and the clerical leadership because even some conservatives have joined in the criticism of alleged mistreatment of prisoners. Senior police and judiciary officials have acknowledged that some detainees were abused and called for those responsible to be punished, apparently in an effort to calm public outrage. Also, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ordered the closure of Kahrizak prison, where at least three prisoners are known to have died.
The issue could also become a weapon in an ongoing split within the conservative camp between Ahmadinejad and his rivals, who have shown increasing tensions since the election. Earlier this month, parliament speaker Ali Larijani - a prominent conservative opponent of the president - resolutely denied Karroubi's claims of rapes against prisoners. But since then, he appears to have softened his position. On Monday, a parliament committee probing abuse claims - which was created by Larijani - met with Karroubi to hear his allegations, lawmaker Kazem Jalali told the semi-official Mehr news agency. "Karroubi shared the case of four people who have gone to him and claimed that they were raped and tortured," Mehr quoted Jalali as saying. The lawmaker said the four told Karroubi that they want to testify about their rape claim but didn't feel safe doing so.
Larijani and his brother, Sadeq Larijani, who was named last week as the new head of the judiciary, have emerged as a potential bloc challenging Ahmadinejad for power and influence during the president's second term. During his swearing-in, Sadeq Larijani suggested he would prosecute security officials accused of prisoner abuse. Such a move could be a further embarrassment for Ahmadinejad, who has staunchly defended the security forces. In a further snub to Ahmadinejad, Sadeq Larijani on Monday appointed as the country's new top prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi, whom Ahmadinejad fired from the post of intelligence minister last month, state TV reported. Ahmadinejad dismissed Ejehi in a dispute over the handling of crackdown on the opposition. Ahmadinejad suggested Ejehi had not taken a sufficiently tough line, saying "if he would have carried out his tasks properly, we would not have these problems on the streets" after the election.
After Ejehi's firing, Ahmadinejad purged at least four senior ministry officials who challenged the crackdown. Ejehi had also criticized Ahmadinejad over his attempt to name a close associate, Esfandiar Rahim Mashai as his top vice president. Conservatives opposed Mashai because he made comments friendly to Israel in the past. Ahamdinejad is also expected to face a tough battle with conservatives in parliament over his proposed 21-member Cabinet list. The parliament is to vote on the list next week, but lawmakers have warned they will reject some of his nominees, saying they are inexperienced.
25.09.2000. Stalinoid courts continue. Protests outside. Top reformist confesses in Iran political trial. Saeed Hajjarian was a die-hard hero of Iran's reform movement, campaigning to reduce the power of the Islamic clerics even after being shot in the head in an assassination attempt that left him partially paralyzed. On Tuesday, he was brought into a courtroom propped up by men who put him in the front row of defendants in Iran's biggest political trial in decades, where he proceeded to renounce his entire career as a reformist. His speech slurred and nearly unintelligible from the 2000 attack, Hajjarian had a statement read proclaiming that Iran's supreme leader represents the rule of God on Earth and asking for forgiveness for his "incorrect" ideas. The stunning confession was among the most dramatic in the trial of more than 100 reform leaders and protesters arrested in Iran's post-election crackdown - testimony the opposition says was coerced by threats and mistreatment during weeks of solitary confinement.
A procession of the biggest names in the reform movement has taken the stand during the past month, some looking thin and tired, all dressed in blue pajama-like prison uniforms and slippers. They have confessed to taking part in what the government says was a plot backed by foreign enemies to overthrow Iran's clerical leadership in a "velvet revolution." The opposition has compared the proceedings to Josef Stalin's "show trials" against his opponents in the Soviet Union, saying the government is trying to wipe out the reform movement. Hajjarian's turn in court perhaps more resembled a scene from China's Cultural Revolution, as he repented of the pro-reform ideology he has espoused for years. In a statement read by a fellow defendant, he confessed to trying to spread "Marxist thought" that "has no relation to Iran." He said he had led astray his political party, the Islamic Iran Participation Front, with his ideas and announced his resignation from the party. He threw his support behind Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, whose rule "springs from the rule of the Prophet Muhammad."
"I've committed grave mistakes by offering incorrect analysis during the election," Hajjarian said. "I apologize to the dear Iranian nation because of my incorrect analyses that was the basis for many wrong actions." The Islamic Iran Participation Front dismissed the confessions by Hajjarian and other party leaders as forced, saying: "What is uttered from their tongue today is not by their will." The 55-year-old Hajjarian was arrested soon after mass protests erupted over the disputed June 12 presidential election, when hundreds of thousands took to the streets claiming that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's victory was fraudulent. Held for weeks in a secret location with no contact with lawyers or family, the opposition repeatedly expressed concern over his health in custody.
A top architect of the reform movement, Hajjarian was a senior aide to former reformist President Mohammad Khatami, helping to design a program of social and political liberalization during Khatami's 1997-2005 administration - policies that were ultimately stymied by hard-line clerics who dominate Iran's Islamic republic system. Hajjarian was among the radical students who seized the US Embassy during the height of the 1979 Islamic revolution and held American diplomats hostage for 444 days. He later helped build the Islamic republic's Intelligence Ministry, rising to high rank in the ministry. But in the 1990s, Hajjarian became disillusioned with the clerical leadership and began to speak out for freedom of expression and political reform. He called for limiting Khamenei's powers and formulated a reform strategy of "pressure from the bottom, bargaining at the top" - rallying the public in favor of change while pressing demands within the halls of power.
In the 2000 assassination attempt, gunmen believed linked to hard-liners shot Hajjarian in the head at close range and the bullet passed through his cheek, lodging in his throat. For years, he had to use a wheelchair, though he can now stand with a walker or support from others. His speech remains impaired from a stroke he had after the attack. During Tuesday's session, the prosecutor called for Hajjarian's party to be dissolved and urged "full punishment" against Hajjarian, though officials have not said what the maximum sentence would entail. Many of those on trial held key positions in Khatami's government and now hold prominent positions in reform parties. Hard-line clerics and politicians have pushed for the arrest of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, who claims to have won the June election, and his ally Mahdi Karroubi, who also ran in the election.
Among the defendants who appeared Tuesday was Kian Tajbakhsh, an Iranian-American academic charged with espionage, contact with foreign elements and acting against national security. Tajbakhsh appeared to try to speak broadly about foreign interference in Iran, telling the court that "undeniably this was a goal of the US and European countries to bring change inside Iran" and that "the root cause of the riots are found outside the borders." But, he added: "Since I've had no contacts with any headquarters inside and outside the country, I have no evidence to prove foreign interference," the state news agency IRNA said. In a rare show of defiance, another defendant, Abdollah Ramezanzadeh, said he opposed Ahmadinejad's government and rejected the court's indictment. "As a reformer, my position is clear," said Ramezanzadeh, a prominent figure in Hajjarian's party. "I've put forward my views in my speeches and I won't change my views." Dozens of relatives of the defendants protested outside the court building during the session until they were dispersed by police and plainclothes pro-government vigilantes [fascist gangs], the pro-opposition Web site Norooz reported.
26.08.2009. Senior Iranian cleric calls system a dictatorship. Iran's most senior dissident cleric on Wednesday criticized the ruling system under Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as a dictatorship in the name of Islam, the most serious attack on the country's top official following the disputed presidential election. Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri said the ruling system showed its true nature with the violent crackdown against the hundreds of thousands who protested President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's re-election and the torture of detainees that led to at least three deaths. "The biggest oppression ... is despotic treatment of the people in the name of Islam," Montazeri said in a written response to some 300 activists that was posted on his Web site. "I hope the responsible authorities give up the deviant path they are pursuing and restore the trampled rights of the people." Montazeri's comments are significant because although criticism of ruling figures has increased following the June election, which the opposition claims was stolen through vote fraud, public attacks against Khamenei are rare. Montazeri's opinion carries weight because the 87-year-old cleric was once tapped to succeed the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as Iran's supreme leader. He was denied the post in the late 1980s because of his criticism of the excesses of the ruling system and his differences with Khomeini. The turmoil following the presidential election has presented the current supreme leader, Khamenei, with the most serious challenge to the country's cleric-led system since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Khamenei and other hard-liners have attempted to paint the post-election turmoil as a plot by Iran's foreign enemies to overthrow the country's Islamic system through a "velvet revolution." The government is holding a mass trial of more than 100 political activists and protesters who it claims provoked the mass demonstrations. The opposition has called the trial a "sham," and Montazeri said it has "ridiculed Islamic justice." "I hope authorities ... have the courage to announce that this ruling system is neither a republic nor Islamic and that nobody has the right to express opinion or criticism," said Montazeri. The government has confirmed that at least 30 people were killed in the post-election crackdown, but the opposition says at least 69 died and many more were tortured in prison. The abuse of detainees has also prompted criticism from conservatives, complicating Khamenei's efforts to end the turmoil. Montazeri has called for curtailing the powers of Khamenei, who has the final say on all state matters and is considered by hard-liners to be answerable only to God.The dissident cleric spent five years under house arrest after saying in 1997 that Khamenei wasn't qualified to rule. The punishment has not silenced Montazeri, who has repeatedly said that the freedom that was promised after the Islamic revolution never materialized. Montazeri is one of just a few grand ayatollahs, the most senior theologians of the Shiite Muslim faith. But after he was placed under house arrest, state-run media stopped referring to Montazeri by his religious title, describing him instead as a "simple-minded" cleric.
27.08.2009. Iranian women activists not fooled by president. Women's rights activists say they aren't fooled by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's nomination of the first female Cabinet ministers since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, calling it a ploy to improve his popularity that will actually hurt the cause of women.
Iran ayatollah: Opposition not stooges for West. Iran's Supreme Leader, the arch-criminal and arch-enemy of the people, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said claims that opposition leaders had links to Western powers have not been proven despite widespread allegations of foreign meddling by hard-liners. The comments late Wednesday appear to mark a significant shift away from the assertions of others in the Islamic leadership, including President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, that the United States, Britain and other nations had a direct hand in guiding the violence and outrage following the disputed June 12 elections. It also could spill over into the trials of more than 100 pro-reform activists and politicians, including some who have offered statements saying foreign agents helped stoke Iran's worst internal unrest since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Rights groups and others say the public confessions were coerced by threats and abuses in custody. Speaking to a group of students on Wednesday night, Khamenei said: "I do not accuse leaders of the recent events of being stooges of aliens including the US and Britain since it was not proved for me."
But Khamenei - who has final say on all state matters - added that the postelection unrest were calculated by Iran's enemies "whether or not its leaders know" and rebuked the opposition leaders for calling attention to alleged abuses of detainees. Ahmadinejad and others, including senior commanders in the Revolutionary Guard, have suggested that Western nations had direct links to opposition leaders such as former parliament speaker Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Mousavi. Khamenei has backed Ahmadinejad throughout the turmoil, but it has come at a price. The postelection crisis has shattered taboos about open criticism of Khamenei and his all-powerful role. Without directly naming opposition leaders, Khamenei criticized them for highlighting claims of abuses in Kahrizak prison, one of the sites holding detained protesters. "Some ignore defacing of the system while highlighting the issue of Kahrizak," Khamenei was quoted as saying by the state Islamic Republic News Agency. "This way of thinking is an open unfairness." Karroubi and others have demanded investigations into allegations of torture and rape against security agents. Criticism of abuses and murder of Neda Agha-Soltan and others is not unfairness, the anarchists say.
28.09.2009. Mr Nobody, president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called for the prosecution of Iran's top opposition leaders Friday, backing hard-liners pushing for escalation of the postelection crackdown. Ahmadinejad's speech reflected the increasing bitterness of what has become Iran's most tumultuous political crisis in decades. The usually cautious Khamenei already has paid a price for backing Ahmadinejad in the election dispute, which damaged his reputation as a neutral arbiter, so he may be hesitant to allow the arrests of Mousavi and his allies. But hard-line clerics and the Revolutionary Guard, the main fascist gang, seem intent on harder action.
29.08.2009. Hardline prosecutor in Iran opposition trial fired. Iran's new judiciary chief has fired the hard-line prosecutor involved in the mass trial of opposition activists charged with seeking to topple the ruling system through a "velvet revolution," state media reported Saturday. Saeed Mortazavi, the Tehran prosecutor, is detested by reformists who call him the "butcher of the press" and "torturer of Tehran" because he was behind the closure of more than 120 newspapers and the imprisonment of dozens of journalists and political activists in the past decade. His replacement signals a shift toward moderation within Iran's judicial system, which is now under the control of a rival to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. However, the opposition trial - criticized by the opposition and rights activists as a "show trial" - will continue. More than 100 prominent opposition supporters have been on trial since Aug. 1 on accusations of plotting to overthrow the clerical leadership through the protests that followed Ahmadinejad's disputed June 12 re-election.
The judiciary chief, Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, appointed Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi to become the new Tehran prosecutor, the official Islamic Republic News Agency reported. Larijani also appointed a three-member team to supervise an investigation into the postelection unrest, including the alleged abuse of detained protesters, IRNA reported. The investigation will include a review of an overnight attack by pro-government vigilantes, fascist gangs, against students in their Tehran University dormitory and the alleged abuse of prisoners at Kahrizk prison, a facility on Tehran's outskirts where many detained protesters were held and which has been at the center of abuse claims. Hundreds of protesters and opposition activists were arrested when security forces crushed the mass protests. The opposition as mentioned says at least 69 people were killed in the crackdown, including some who died from torture in prison.
As Tehran prosecutor, Mortazavi was behind the announcement of false information about the death of an Iranian-Canadian journalist while in police custody in 2003. The hard-line judiciary announced that Zahra Kazemi died of a stroke. But an investigation ordered by former reformist President Mohammad Khatami later found that Kazemi died of a fractured skull and brain hemorrhage from a blow to the head. The allegations of prisoner abuse in the postelection crackdown have rattled not only Ahmadinejad's government but the entire ruling system. In particular, claims by prominent opposition figure Mahdi Karroubi that some detainees have been raped prompted criticism from pro-government conservatives. On Saturday, the Web site of Karroubi's party was blocked. The Web site has reported extensively on the prisoner abuse claims.
01.09.2009. The ITUC, supported by the International Workers of the World, lodged a submission detailing Iran's violations of fundamental workers' rights to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review, a high-level UN procedure on human rights. Iran will be discussed at the 7th session of the UPR Working Group from 2 - 10 February 2010. The ITUC, Global Union Federations and International Workers of the World have been calling for years for full democratic rights for all Iranians, including freedom of association and freedom of assembly; a halt to all violent repression; the release of all imprisoned trade unionists; recognition of all independent workers' organizations in Iran; ratification of and respect for all the core labour standards; a halt to all anti-union repression and the reinstatement of unfairly dismissed workers.
The UN Universal Periodic Review was established by the UN General Assembly in 2006, at the same time as the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC). It conducts four-yearly reviews of human rights in each of the 192 UN member states, and is designed to "prompt, support, and expand the promotion and protection of human rights". Along with the international labor movement's, including anarchosyndicalists' actions vis-a-vis the International Labor Organization to press Iran to respect fundamental labour standards, the ITUC submission to the UPR sets out a catalogue of serious violations of these standards, and calls for Iran to respect its international obligations, both with respect to the ILO and under the UN's International Covenant on Economic, Cultural and Social Rights, Article 8 of which provides for the right to form and join unions, and the right to strike.
03.09.2009. Iran assembly approves most of hard-line government. Mr Nobody, president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad received a broad mandate Thursday as parliament backed his main government choices - naming the first woman minister since the 1979 Islamic Revolution but showing international defiance by supporting a suspected mastermind in the bombing of an Argentine Jewish center that killed 85 people. The conservative-dominated legislature rejected Ahmadinejad's choice for energy minister and two other women nominated for less prominent posts. The rest of his 21-member Cabinet was approved. The broad backing was somewhat stronger than many in Iran had expected because even some of the president's fellow conservatives had criticized him for nominating unqualified ministers. Ahmadinejad is also under fire for the abuse of protesters detained following the disputed June presidential election.
The parliament's strong support could indicate that despite differences among conservatives, they believe it is better to present a fairly united front as Iran faces possible harsher international sanctions over its nuclear program and continued pressure from reformists at home. The most defiant message parliament sent was its overwhelming support for Ahmad Vahidi as defense minister. He is wanted over charges of involvement in the 1994 bombing of the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association building in Buenos Aires. Vahidi was the commander of a special unit of Iran's Revolutionary Guard known as the Quds Force at the time of the attack and is one of five prominent Iranians sought by Argentina in the bombing. Lawmakers chanted "Allahu Akbar, or "God is great," as parliament speaker Ali Larijani announced the vote for Vahidi. Among the 286 lawmakers who attended, Vahidi received 227 votes - the most of any of the proposed ministers.
Argentina on Thursday called it an affront to Argentine justice and to the 85 victims of the attack. "We reiterate once again that his confirmation as defense minister merits the most energetic condemnation from the government of our country," said a spokesman for foreign minister Jorge Taiana, who was traveling in India Thursday. Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association president Guillermo Borger told the AP that Vahidi's confirmation "is a cruel joke aimed at AMIA, at the Jewish collective, at society, at the government and at all Argentina. More than that, it's a cruel joke at the world..." In 2008, President Cristina Fernandez called on the suspects to face Argentina's justice system, which she said would treat them fairly. US State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley told reporters Thursday that the United States had been hoping Iran would take a "fresh approach" and be willing to engage the world. "We find today's action disturbing, and, for Iran, it is sending precisely the wrong message," he said, adding that "Iran is taking a step backward" with the appointment of the defense minister. Crowley added that the United States supports Argentina's efforts to bring justice to the perpetrators of the bombing. Also the Anarchist International supports Argentina's efforts to bring justice to the perpetrators of the bombing.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor also criticized it, saying it "is more proof of the violent nature of the regime and a total disregard of the need to work with the international community." Interpol issued a "red notice" for Vahidi in 2007, placing him on the equivalent of its most wanted list. An Interpol spokeswoman said Thursday that the notice will still be valid even if Vahidi travels on a diplomatic passport. She spoke on condition of anonymity according to Interpol's standard policy.
Shortly before the government vote, Ahmadinejad told parliament that Western countries he accuses of stoking postelection unrest deserve "a crushing response from lawmakers to disappoint them." President Barack Obama has stepped up diplomatic engagement with Iran to reduce international tension, but the turmoil and false allegations of Western interference have hampered the effort. The US and its European allies have given Iran until the end of September to agree to nuclear talks or face harsher sanctions. They are worried that Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons - a claim Tehran denies. Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Saeed Jalili, offered an opening for possible compromise with the West on Tuesday, saying Iran would present new proposals and would be ready to open talks to ease international concerns. But Ahmadinejad was as defiant as ever Thursday, saying "no one can impose sanctions on Iran anymore." Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hasan Qashqavi also took a tough stance, proclaiming Iran would not bend to Western deadlines set by "threat and pressure."
Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki will continue in his post in Ahmadinejad's second term. Parliament also endorsed the president's nominees in key posts heading the interior, intelligence and oil ministries. Conservative lawmakers probably rallied around Ahmadinejad because of growing foreign pressure and the continuing postelection turmoil. Lawmakers approved a 50-year-old gynecologist, Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi, as health minister but rejected his nominees to head the education and welfare and social security ministries. "With a woman in the Cabinet, women have achieved their long-awaited dream," said Dastjerdi after she was approved. Some conservatives have criticized Ahmadinejad for elevating women to the government. Last month, the Emrouz newspaper quoted Mohammad Taghi Rahbar, a member of the parliament's judiciary committee, as saying there were "religious doubts" over how women would cope with the positions. Women's rights activists have criticized Ahmadinejad's appointments as a desperate ploy to improve his popularity rather than a true interest in promoting women's rights. Since coming to power in 2005, Ahmadinejad has cracked down hard on women activists. Dastjerdi is the first female minister since Education Minister Farrokhroo Parsay, who served in the 1970s but was executed for corruption shortly after Islamic clerics seized power in the 1979 revolution.
04.09.2009. The supreme leader helped secure parliament's support for hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's government ministers, a senior lawmaker said in remarks carried by an Iranian news agency on Friday. A senior cleric urged Iran's factions on Friday to end post-election infighting, suggesting they should focus on trying to "export the [Shi'ite fascist] revolution" instead. The anarchists clearly oppose this policy.
12.09.2009. Iran judiciary rejects opposition rape allegations. A high-level Iranian judicial panel rejected claims made by a pro-reform presidential candidate that detained protesters were raped and demanded those making the allegations be prosecuted, the state news agency said Saturday. The ruling ratchets up the pressure on Mahdi Karroubi, one of the most prominent reformist leaders challenging the legitimacy of the president's re-election and the entire governing system. The decision could well be a prelude to his own arrest, following earlier calls by conservative religious and security officials for his prosecution. "The panel reached the conclusion that there is no evidence proving the rape of individuals who Karroubi claimed had been raped. These allegations are unsubstantiated ... and documents submitted are totally fabricated and aimed at misleading public opinion," the report said.
The three-member panel, which included the top prosecutor and the deputy head of the judiciary, demanded prosecution of those "spreading lies, libel ... and discrediting the ruling system" by making such allegations - an indirect reference to Karroubi himself. The Supreme National Security Council, Iran's top security decision-making body, also on Saturday banned the media from publishing any reports about Karroubi and fellow reformist leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, suggesting an intensification of the efforts to silence them. The panel's decision also comes a day after Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warned the country's reformist opposition that it would face a "harsh response" for confronting the ruling system.
Karroubi has said he received reports from former military commanders and freed prisoners that male and female detainees were savagely raped by their jailers to the point of physical and mental damage. The former parliamentary speaker has also revealed several abuse cases in a challenge to the country's leadership, which has sought to silence such claims in the postelection crackdown. On Tuesday, security forces raided Karroubi's office and shut down his party, the National Confidence Party, and arrested a number of his aides who had been taking testimony of abuse from released protesters. The abuse allegations have been deeply embarrassing for the Iranian government and the clerical leadership, amid reports that several detainees were tortured to death. The government's rejection of the opposition's rape allegations is probably false, the anarchists say.
17.09.2009. Iranian regime's forces warn opposition over rally. The Iranian regime's elite Revolutionary Guard, a fascist gang, is warning opposition protesters against holding a new anti-government demonstration. Opposition activists have called for protests to coincide with government-sponsored demonstrations marking Quds [Jerusalem] Day Friday 18.09.2009, dedicated to condemning Israel and expressing support for the Palestinians. The Revolutionary Guard says that if protesters "attempt any sort of violation and disorder" they will encounter "strong confrontation." The statement was carried Thursday on Iran's official IRNA news agency. There has not been a mass opposition demonstration since mid-July.
18.09.2009. Thousands march in Iran opposition protests. Hard-liners attacked senior pro-reform leaders in the streets as tens of thousands marched in competing mass demonstrations by the opposition and government supporters. Opposition protesters, chanting "death to the dictator," hurled stones and bricks in clashes with security forces firing tear gas. The opposition held its first major street protests since mid-July, with marchers decked out in green - the reform movement's color - waving V-for-victory signs on major boulevards in the capital. In some cases on several blocks away, larger crowds marched in government-sponsored rallies marking an annual anti-Israel commemoration, waving pictures of Iran's supreme leader and president and placards denouncing the Jewish state.
The commemoration, known as Quds Day, is a major political occasion for the government - a day for it to show its anti-Israeli credentials and its support for the Palestinians. Quds is the Arabic word for Jerusalem. During a speech for the rallies, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad railed against Israel and the West, questioning whether the Holocaust occurred and calling it a pretext for occupying Arab land. But the opposition was determined to turn the day into a show of its survival and continued strength despite a fierce three-month-old crackdown against it since the disputed June 12 presidential election. Top opposition leaders joined the protests, in direct defiance of commands by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who barred anti-government demonstrations on Quds Day. That could provoke an escalation in the crackdown: hard-line clerics have been demanding the past week that any leader backing the protests should be arrested.
Several tens of thousands joined the opposition marches, witnesses said - far smaller than the masses that turned out in the Quds Day rallies, which were helped by government organizing. Police and security forces, along with pro-government Basij militiamen, fanned out along main squares and avenues and in many cases tried to keep nearby opposition protesters away from the Quds Day rallies to prevent clashes, witnesses said. Opposition supporters poured onto main boulevards and squares, wearing green T-shirts and wristbands and waving green banners and balloons. They waved pictures of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi and denounced Ahmadinejad, chanting "death to the dictator."
Others chanted, "Not Gaza, not Lebanon - our life is for Iran" - a slogan directly challenging the government's support for anti-Israeli Palestinian militants in Gaza and Lebanon's Hezbollah guerrilla. Some shouted for Ahmadinejad's government to resign. Some women marched with their children in tow. But at one of the several opposition rallies around the city, a group of hard-liners pushed through the crowd and attacked former President Mohamad Khatami, a cleric who is one of the most prominent pro-reform figures, according to a reformist Web site. The report cited witnesses as saying the opposition activists rescued Khatami and quickly repelled the assailants. Opposition Web sites reported that Khatami fell to the ground, but witnesses said he was only jostled and remained standing.
Hard-liners also tried to attack the main opposition leader, Mousavi, when he joined another march elsewhere in the city, a witness said. Supporters rushed Mousavi into his car when the hard-liners approached, and the vehicle sped away as his supporters pushed the hard-liners back, the witness said. He and other witnesses spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of government retaliation. Another pro-reform leader, Mahdi Karroubi, who also ran in the presidential election, also joined protests elsewhere in the city. In one of the main Tehran squares, Haft-e Tir, security forces weilding batons and firing tear gas tried to break up one of the opposition marched, and were met with protesters throwing stones and bricks, witnesses said. Several policemen were seen being taken away with light injuries. At least 10 protesters were seized by plainclothes security agents in marches around the city, witnesses said.
The pro-government Quds Day rallies were held in cities around the country, and the opposition staged competing rallies in the southern and central cities of Shiraz and Isfahan, witnesses said. In Shiraz, police rushed the protesters with batons, scuffling with them, witnesses said. The opposition claims that Ahmadinejad won the June election by fraud and that Mousavi is the rightful victor. Hundreds of thousands marched in support of Mousavi in the weeks after the vote, until police, Basij and the elite Revolutionary Guard crushed the protests, arresting hundreds. The opposition says 72 people were killed in the crackdown, thought the government puts the number at 36. The last significant protest was on July 17.
In sheer numbers, the opposition turnout was far smaller than the mass pro-government Quds Day marches - not surprising given the state's freedom to organize the gathering. Customarily on Quds Day, Iranians gather for pro-Palestinian rallies in various parts of the city, marching through the streets and later converging for the prayer ceremony. The ceremony was established in 1979 by the leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Just hundreds of yards (meters) away from opposition protesters on the main Keshavarz Boulevard, thousands of Ahmadinejad supporters marched carrying huge photographs of the president and Supreme Leader Khamenei. Some in the government-sponsored rally chanted: "Death to those who oppose the supreme leader!" At the climax of the occasion, Ahmadinejad addressed worshippers before Friday prayers at the Tehran University campus, reiterating his anti-Holocaust rhetoric that has drawn international condemnation since 2005. He questioned whether the "Holocaust was a real event" and saying Israel was created on "a lie and mythical claims." Ahmadinejad repeated caustic statements about Israel and the Holocaust in a speech he delivered Friday to mark support for the Palestinian people. "The existence of the Zionist regime is an insult to human dignity," Ahmadinejad said. "They just try to support the myth of the Holocaust and at same time they hoist the flag of supporting the Jews." Ahmadinejad is a lier, the anarchists declare.
21.09.2009. Mr Nobody, Iran's Ahmadinejad proud of Holocaust denial. According to AP, Iran's president said Monday he is proud to stoke international outrage with his latest remarks denying the Holocaust as he heads for the United Nations this week - showing he is as defiant as ever while his country comes under greater pressure to curtail its nuclear program. Ahmadinejad is a lier, the anarchists repeat.
23.09.2009. Iran's president rails against marxism and rapacious capitalism. Under increasing attack over Iran's suspected nuclear weapons program, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told the UN General Assembly on Wednesday that Tehran was ready to meet conciliation with conciliation. Ahmadinejad spoke to a half-empty chamber as he sought to cast himself as a beleaguered champion of the developing world, that he portrayed as under attack from rapacious capitalism. The Iranian leader peppered his speech with religious references, invoking the prophets of Judaism and Christianity, as well as Islam. Yet most of the speech focused on his usual themes - scathing verbal attacks on archenemy Israel and the West. He accused the West of hypocrisy, saying it preached democracy, but violated its fundamental principles. Ahmadinejad portrayed Iran as a defender of poor countries, lashed out at unbridled capitalism which he said has reached the end of the road and will suffer the same fate as Marxism. In reality Iran is more capitalist - economical plutarchist - than the USA, and the Iranian system is also very statist, all in all a right fascist regime, the Anarchist International repeats.
Turning to domestic affairs, Ahmadinejad insisted he won a "large majority" in what he described as "glorious and fully democratic" June elections. Outside the UN complex, hundreds of supporters of Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi rallied against Ahmadinejad, wearing green, the movement's signature color. One of the demonstrators, Amir Arani, said that the election was stolen and that "our president is not Ahmadinejad." In the plenum, many seats were empty during the speech, and some delegates got up midway through. The US, Israel and Canada were among those that boycotted the speech, in protest against his persistent denial of the Holocaust. In another apparent anti-Semitic reference, Ahmadinejad complained that a "small minority" controls politics, economics and culture across much of the world. Mark Kornblau, spokesman for the US Mission to the United Nations, said: "It is disappointing that Mr. Ahmadinejad has once again chosen to espouse hateful, offensive and anti-Semitic rhetoric." The Anarchist International condemns all forms of anti-Semitism.
02.10.2009. 2 Iranian dissidents say they were raped in captivity. CNN reports: Two Iranians who were caught up in the waves of arrests that followed the disputed presidential elections in June have accused their captors of raping them. An Iranian man and a woman made the allegations in separate interviews with CNN. Both said they fled to Turkey from Iran after claiming to have been threatened by Iranian security services. While CNN does not normally use the names of alleged rape victims, their names are included here with their permission. CNN could not independently confirm their accounts. But the testimony of one of the alleged rape victims, Ibrahim Sharifi, was revealed last month by a prominent Iranian opposition leader who claimed to have gathered at least four accounts of sexual assault this summer in Iranian prisons. Sharifi's allegations were also included in a report published last week by two Western human rights organizations investigating reports of abuse in Iranian prisons. "What we're encountering are numerous accounts of brutality, poor treatment, even torture, serious beatings, and a couple of cases, as you know, of alleged sexual assault -- rape," said Joe Stork, Middle East deputy director for Human Rights Watch. The Iranian government has launched two investigations into the allegations. Iran's judiciary concluded there was no evidence of rape. A parliamentary fact-finding committee is still working on the issue. Repeated calls by CNN to get reaction from Iranian officials to the claims of the alleged victims did not result in a response.
"Take him and get him pregnant" Twenty-four-year-old Ibrahim Sharifi is a university student from Tehran who campaigned actively on the Internet for opposition presidential candidate Mehdi Karrubi in the run-up to the controversial June 12 vote. When incumbent president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared winner, Sharifi joined the throngs of angry protesters in the streets who accused the government of rigging the election. On June 22, Sharifi said, he was kidnapped, handcuffed, blindfolded and stuffed into a car by three unknown men while he was walking home from language lessons at the Italian Embassy. He said they drove him to an unknown location, where he was stripped to his underwear. There, he said, he endured several days of beatings and mock executions alongside other male prisoners, all the time tightly blindfolded. "They took us and they put a noose around my neck in a way that I was forced to stand on my tiptoes, unable to breathe," Sharifi said. "Somebody was constantly telling us ... 'You have received the oral sentence to be hanged, we are just waiting for the written order.'" "There was the stink of piss and blood. It smelled terrible," Sharifi recalled. "I was beaten so much I didn't have any energy left to cry." On the fourth day of his detention, during one of these mock executions, Sharifi said he finally snapped. "I said, if you want to kill us, go ahead. Why do you play such games with us? And the response was a kick in my stomach that made me fall." Sharifi said his captors kicked him repeatedly in the stomach until he started vomiting blood. He showed a pink scar on his belly from a previous car accident that he said was torn open by the blows.
"Then the guy told someone else, 'Take him and get him pregnant,'" Sharifi said, his voice cracking with emotion. "They tied my hands to the wall and tied my legs, and then did that thing to me. While doing it, he was telling me, "You, who cannot even defend your you-know-what, you wanted to conduct a revolution?" Sharifi said he blacked out during the rape and woke up later, handcuffed to a hospital bed. A day later, he said, his captors dumped him, blindfolded, on the side of a highway. "I was raped. Raped four times". Twenty-one-year-old Maryam Sabri spoke to CNN by telephone from a Turkish city where, like Sharifi, she is waiting for the UN High Commission for Refugees to process her request for asylum. She said she was arrested by men in plainclothes on July 30 while attending a ceremony at the grave of Neda Agha-Soltan, the Iranian woman whose death was captured by cell phone camera after she was shot during a protest in the streets of Tehran. "When I asked them where was I being taken to, why have you arrested me, who are you?" their response was a constant slap on my face," Sabri recounted.
Sabri said she was interrogated several times after being detained. The sexual assault began during the third interrogation, she said. "He said, 'OK, you wanted your vote back? Now I'm going to give back your vote." It was then that I was raped. Raped four times," she said. "My hands were tied and my eyes were blindfolded," she said. "He threw me on the ground while pressing my throat with one hand, and both my legs were under the weight of his legs so I couldn't move at all." Sabri said the last time she was raped, her assailant took off her blindfold and said he would release her on the condition that, once out of prison, she remain in contact with him and cooperate with him. Several days after her release, Sabri said the alleged rapist, described as a man in his late 30s with light eyes and several days' worth of stubble, began calling her on her cell phone and threatening her. She fled Iran several weeks later and applied for refugee status in Turkey.
Rape as punishment? Human rights organizations Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran have expressed alarm about the reports of sexual assault in prison. "The issue is, are the authorities using rape as a tool to pressure people, to punish people?" asked Stork, the Middle East deputy director for Human Rights Watch. "In the case of the one individual, Ibrahim Sharifi, it appears it was a punishment." Iran's parliament and judiciary launched investigations into the allegations. But last month, Iranian security forces raided the offices of Karrubi, the opposition presidential candidate and longtime advocate for prisoners' rights who first publicized the rape allegations. The offices of another opposition candidate, Mir Hossein Moussavi, were also raided in September. Iran's powerful conservative parliamentary speaker, Ali Larijani, said a special committee of Iran's parliament, or Majlis, conducted a "precise and comprehensive inquiry" into the treatment at Tehran's Evin and Kahrizak prisons and found "no cases of rape or sexual abuse," government-funded Press TV reported last month. Larijani accused Karrubi of spreading "sheer lies."
However, not everyone was persuaded by the investigation. "The Iranian authorities appear more intent on finding the identities of those who claim to have been tortured by security officials than in carrying out an impartial investigation," said Amnesty International Secretary General Irene Khan. Sabri and Sharifi are members of a growing population of expatriate Iranian dissidents in Turkey. Both face an uncertain future as refugees here and worry about the safety of their families back in Tehran. Sabri claims her father was arrested after she first went public with her rape testimony on the US government-funded network Voice of America. Sharifi, meanwhile, said that before he fled Iran, government investigators accused him of lying about his prison experience for money ... charges he angrily denies. "I broke a taboo in Iran," he said, weeping. "I sat in front of the camera and committed social suicide so this incident wouldn't happen to others." "I want the whole world to know that Iran's problems are not only limited to the nuclear issue," he said. "The Iranian regime plays games with other countries of the world. It plays the same games with its own nation and people."
03.10.2009. Iranian nuclear plant causes Norwegian concern. A second uranium enrichment plant in Iran has led the Anarchy of Norway to join other countries in expressing its concern over the disclosure, claiming that the plant is a clear breach of UN Security Council requirements. The Norway Post reports that Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre claimed that there is an increasing crisis of confidence between the international community and Iran, over its lack of transparency with regards to nuclear activities. It was announced last week that Iran had managed to keep hidden for years the existence of the uranium enrichment plant. The news is just the latest in a series of breaches of the regulaions laid down by the UN Security Council and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). "The latest reports that Iran has built a new enrichment plant give cause for grave concern," said Mr. Støre. "This is incompatible with Security Council requirements, and shows clearly that Iran has not laid all its cards on the table".
At the G-20 meeting in Pennsylvania, other world leaders including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and US President Barack Obama all condemned Iran's behaviour, after the discovery of the new Iranian enrichment plant. "This latest turn of events also shows how crucial it is that Iran show full transparency regarding its nuclear facilities and allow the IAEA full access. Otherwise it will be impossible for Iran to gain international confidence, which is also necessary for the country to exercise its right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, which we have never contested," said the Anarchy of Norway's Foreign Minister Støre. Mr. Støre also highlighted the Security Council's move to pass recent agreements of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament. "The uncertainty surrounding Iran's intentions could, unfortunately, complicate the efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons. This is extremely regrettable," said Mr Støre.
11.10.2009. Calls for anti-nuclear action in Iran. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the world "will not wait indefinitely" for Iran to live up to its international obligations regarding its nuclear program. Clinton said in London on Sunday that a recent meeting in Geneva that saw Iran and six world powers resume nuclear talks was "a constructive beginning, but it must be followed by action." The Anarchist International agrees. The US and its allies fear Tehran wants to build an atomic bomb and is using what it calls a civilian nuclear energy program as cover. Iran is under UN penalties for refusing to stop enriching uranium, a key first step toward building a bomb.
16.10.2009. Iranian cleric warns against opposition rally next month, urges harsh treatment for detainees. A hard-line cleric sought Friday to head off an attempt to reinvigorate Iran's anti-government movement, warning against a planned opposition rally next month that would coincide with annual state-sponsored demonstrations against the United States. Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, delivering the weekly Muslim prayer sermon in Tehran, also had an unusual warning for the security forces, telling them any soft treatment of those activists already in detention would be considered treason. "Nobody gives a flower to his murderer," he said.
Iranian authorities as mentioned executed a fierce crackdown on the hundreds of thousands of protesters who poured into the streets in a) response to allegations that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won re-election in June through vote fraud, and b) general protests against the ultra-authoritarian fascist regime. Opposition groups say at least 72 protesters were killed in the unrest, while government officials insist only 36 people died. Hundreds were detained in sweeps and there were accusations that people were abused and even raped in custody. Iran has also brought more than 100 people, including some of the most senior figures in the country's pro-reform movement, to trial on charges of plotting to overthrow Iran's clerical leadership. Three of the defendants have been sentenced to death.
Under the government's campaign, street protests fizzled and the opposition has been unable to decisively regroup. The last significant protest was as mentioned on Sept. 18, when tens of thousands of protesters - many chanting "Death to the dictator!" - rallied in defiance of a ban on the march by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and clashed with police. That rally coincided with a government-organized anti-Israel protest held annually.
Opposition Web sites say another attempt will be made on Nov. 4, when there are calls for a rally coinciding with another yearly state-sponsored event - a day of marches to mark the anniversary of the 1979 student takeover of the US Embassy. Jannati, whose sermon was broadcast live on state radio, falsely accused the opposition of seeking to transform the event into an outpouring of support for the US Iranian authorities have sought since the unrest first broke out to falsely portray the activists as tools of the West, particularly America and Britain. "They want to show their pro-American and pro-Israeli nature on the day," Jannati said. "If they are allowed, they will say, 'Long live the US and Israel.'"
Jannati, a fascist extremist and a zealous supporter of President Ahmadinejad, heads a clerical body that oversees elections and parliamentary decisions. Jannati asked intelligence services and the judiciary to deal harshly with detainees and said any officials who do not would be committing treason.
17.10.2009. Iran opposition: Use of force won't halt demands! Iran's embattled opposition leaders promised to press on with their campaign against the country's rulers, saying the use of force to crush the post-election protests will not silence their demands for democratic change. The powerful statement of defiance Friday from opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi and former President Mohammad Khatami also sent a message to their supporters that the protest campaign triggered by the disputed June 12 presidential election still had energy and leadership though street demonstrations fizzled out months ago. As mentioned a bloody crackdown and a mass trial of pro-reform figures that has so far produced three death sentences quelled the weeks of street protests that followed the vote. One of Iran's most prominent pro-reform figures who has been part of the mass trial, Saeed Hajjarian, has been convicted of inciting post-election unrest and sentenced to a five-year suspended jail term, reformist Web sites said Saturday. Hajjarian was released on bail earlier this month after more than three months in prison. Judiciary officials were unavailable for comment on Hajjarian's reported sentence.
Since the violent post-election crackdown, the opposition has been struggling to reinvigorate itself as Iran's government under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad cements its control. Mousavi, who claims the election was stolen from him through massive vote fraud, met Friday with Khatami, who began the drive for greater political and social freedoms in Iran during his 1997-2005 presidency. They discussed obstacles facing the reformists. "The use of force and pressure won't force the Iranian nation to deviate one iota from the path it has chosen," said a statement posted after the meeting on Khatami's Web site. "And those loyal to ... Iran won't give up their ... patriotic responsibilities despite all problems and threats." The two leaders said a "security climate" imposed by hard-liners to try to silence the opposition has instead undermined people's trust in the ruling system and paved the way for those who want to change the regime.
As mentioned, thousands of people were arrested in the heavy crackdown that crushed the mass protests in support of Mousavi. It was the country's worst unrest since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. More than 100 people, including Hajjarian and many other prominent reformist political figures, have stood trial since August on charges of supporting the unrest and seeking to topple the ruling system through a "velvet revolution." Some of the defendants, including a former vice president, confessed to fomenting the unrest, but the opposition condemned the trial as a "ridiculous show" and said the admissions were obtained under duress. "Confronting people's civil protest ... and the distortion, fabrication, insult and false statements broadcast on state media ... will undoubtedly create the best situation for those who are opposed to the very basis of the system," said the statement from Khatami and Mousavi. The two leaders said curbing liberties, suppressing reformist media, imprisoning activists and leveling charges against reformist politicians without giving them the right to respond in state media were contrary to Iran's constitution and Islamic Sharia law. A political movement created by Mousavi called the Green Path of Hope has sought to provide the opposition to Ahmadinejad's government with a rallying point even as the street protests have fizzled. Last week, Khatami said the Green Path of Hope will never die despite the clampdown. "Be certain that there is no going back in this movement," he said. The Anarchist International once more calls for a velvet revolution in Iran, i.e. a movement of the system in horizontal direction.
18.10.2009. Revolutionary Guards targeted in suicide bomb attack. Six senior Revolutionary Guards commanders have been killed along with 25 other people in a suicide bomb attack in Iran. The attack, on one of the country's most powerful military institutions has highlighted deepening instability along the Islamic Republic's south- eastern border. At least 30 other people were injured in the explosion. Witnesses say the suicide bomber detonated explosives strapped to his body outside a conference centre in the south-eastern city of Sarbaz in the Sistan Baluchestan province where many minority Sunnis live. A Sunni rebel group is said to have admitted carrying out the attack. Iranian state television claims the group, called Jundollah, or God's soldiers, ordered the bombing. Among the dead was General Nourali Shoustari, the chief of the Guards' ground forces. Iran's Parliament Speaker paid tribute to the dead Guards officers prompting a chorus of "Death to America" from the floor of the house. USA was not involved in the the attack. The Revolutionary Guard, a fascist gang, is a branch of the military founded after the Iranian revolution. It is fiercely loyal to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and has an estimated 120,000 troops with its own naval and air corps. It also controls the paramilitary Basij militia, another fascist gang, deployed on the streets of Iran after the disputed presidential election in June. The Anarchist International condemns the suicide bomb attack. Such ochlarchical terrorist acts are not a part of a velvet revolution. The anarchists support the opposition's planned actions on Nov. 4, as long as it is not ochlarchical. For a velvet revolution!
19.10.2009. The death toll has been hiked. Iranian media say the Sunni Muslim insurgent group Jundollah (God's soldiers) has claimed responsibility for Sunday's bombing in Sistan-Baluchestan province, which killed 42 people in all. Jundallah, which emerged in 2002 in Iran's remote and mountainous southeast, has waged a low-level insurgency there to protest what it says is government persecution of the Baluchi ethnic minority. Baluchis follow the Sunni branch of Islam and are a minority in predominantly Shiite, Persian Iran. A claim of responsibility in the name of the group was posted Monday on an Islamic Web site that usually publishes al-Qaeda statements. The posting, whose authenticity could not be verified, made no mention of any assistance from foreign powers. The group has carried out sporadic kidnappings and attacks in recent years - including targeting the Revolutionary Guard and Shiite civilians. In Sunday's attack, a suicide bomber with explosives strapped around his waist struck as senior Guard commanders were entering a sports complex to meet tribal leaders to discuss Sunni-Shiite cooperation in the Pishin district near the Pakistani border. Revolutionary Guard chief Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari vowed Monday to deliver a "crushing" response. "New evidence has been obtained proving the link between yesterday's terrorist attack and the US, British and Pakistani intelligence services," state TV quoted Jafari as saying. He said the attack was "undoubtedly" planned and ordered by the three nation's intelligence services and that a delegation would soon travel to Pakistan to present evidence. The accusations that US, British and Pakistani intelligence services are behind the attack are probably lies. The United States, Pakistan and Britain have all condemned the bombing, the bloodiest attack in Iran since the 1980-88 war with Iraq, and denied involvement.
21.10.2009. Iran makes arrests over bombing, Pakistan vows help. Iran has made arrests in connection with Sunday's suicide bombing that killed dozens of people near the border with Pakistan, it said on Wednesday. Pakistan said it would help its neighbor hunt down the culprits. "
04.11.2009. Iran opposition holds first big protests in 2 months. Police have clashed with protesters in the Iranian capital, Tehran. Hundreds of people took to the streets shouting, "Death to Dictators". They are supporters of two opposition leaders – Mir-hussain Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi, who also took part in the protest. The crowd were angry about the disputed presidential election in June, that led to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad winning a second term. The police used batons and tear gas to disperse the crowd. A reformist website is reporting that police also fired shots, however there is no independent confirmation. Reports in Iran are also claiming that at least five people have been arrested. The protesters joined in an official rally marking the 30th anniversary of the storming of the US embassy. Iran's Revolutionary Guard and the allied Basij militia had warned opposition supporters not to use the sanctioned event as an opportunity to vent their anger. So, anticipating trouble, hundreds of police were in the main squares, ready to deal with the protesters.
The crackdown showed no compromise from the leadership. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says it is a crime to question the June 12 vote which secured the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Defeated presidential candidates Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi say they are committed to reform.
Following are some questions about the future of the reform movement in Iran and attempts to answers:
HOW SIGNIFICANT WERE WEDNESDAY'S PROTESTS?
Many Iranians were frightened to join the latest protest after harsh warnings from the clerical establishment and security forces, particularly the fascist gang, so called Revolutionary Guards, that quelled post-election protests. By contrast, the June election plunged Iran into its deepest internal crisis since the 1979 Islamic revolution and the opposition said more than 70 people were killed in ensuing protests. Officials say half that number were killed. Harsh sentences issued by the judiciary for jailed protesters prevented some supporters of Mousavi and Karoubi from joining the latest anti-government protest. However, there is political will for the demonstrations to continue.
DO SUCH DEMONSTRATIONS DAMAGE THE CLERICAL LEADERSHIP?
The rough-and-tumble of Iranian politics since the disputed vote has badly dented the clerical establishment's image, both domestically and internationally. The demonstrations hit the prestige of the ruling clergy, already under international pressure over Iran's disputed nuclear programme. Reformers believe the Islamic Republic must change in order to survive and meet the demands of its predominately youthful population. Hardliners clearly have no intention of yielding to such demands.
WHAT SUPPORT DO OPPOSITION LEADERS HAVE?
Iranian opposition leaders still enjoy the support of many Iranians, who want a freer country. But it is unclear whether people's direct actions, including mass demonstrations, will work in Iran. Opposition leaders have not abandoned their fight for free expression and the rule of law. They have repeatedly pledged to press ahead with efforts to reform the Islamic state. Mousavi and Karoubi were both very close to the late founder of Iran's revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and their revolutionary credentials cannot be ignored. Some relatives of Khomeini, including his grandson Hasan, have angered hardliners by openly supporting opposition leaders.
HOW DIVIDED IS THE CLERICAL LEADERSHIP OVER TIES WITH THE WEST AND THE NUCLEAR PROGRAMME?
Iran's top authority Khamenei, the arch-enemy of the people, has the last say on all state matters, including Iran's nuclear programme and its relations with the West. Opposition leaders within the clerical leadership have never challenged Iran's system of clerical rule, even if many of their supporters are seeking broader change. Reformists are in favour of improving ties with the West but echo Iran's official stance over the country's nuclear programme, saying it is Iran's right to have the technology.
The anarchists condemn the ochlarchical tendencies at the Nov. 4 demonstrations, especially from the fascist gang, so called Revolutionary Guards. Most of the opposition's actions on Nov. 4 were non-ochlarchical, and these actions were supported by the anarchists. The anarchists repeat the call for a velvet revolution - not ochlarchical!
07.11.2009. Iranian police detained more than 100 people for "disturbing public order" during Wednesday's rally to mark the anniversary of the seizure of the US embassy, the official IRNA news agency reported on Saturday. Security forces clashed with supporters of Iran's opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi in Tehran on Wednesday 04.11.2009 when an annual state-organized rally marking the 30th anniversary of the storming of the US embassy turned violent. "Police arrested 109 people who created disorder and disturbed public order and security on the sideline of the rally on Wednesday," said Azizollah Rajabzadeh, head of Tehran police, IRNA reported. "Some 62 of the detainees were jailed and the rest were released."
08.11.2009. Iran has released a further 40 people detained during the opposition demonstration 04.11.2009 that led to clashes with police, state media said on Sunday. Tehran's public prosecutors' office said several other detainees, including some who had expressed regret over taking part in the rally, had been released in recent days, student news agency ISNA and the Fars news agency said.
09.11.2009. Iran police say ready to carry out hand amputations. The anarchists condemn such punishment, because it is ultra-authoritarian and barbaric. Iranian police are ready to enforce Islamic punishment law, such as amputating hands, because a failure to carry out these punishments had led an increase of crimes, the Ebtekar newspaper reported Monday. Under Iran's interpretation of Islamic law, repeat offenders face amputation of their fingers for theft, but sentences are seldom carried out, especially in public. In recent years, such sharia sentences have rarely been reported. "Not carrying the Islamic punishment law, particularly its most important part that is hand amputation, spreads insecurity in Iran," said Asghar Jafari, head of Iran's criminal police, Ebtekar reported. "Police are ready to carry out hand amputation of convicted criminals." The United Nations, anarchists and rights activists have criticized Iran for such amputations. Iran dismisses the criticism, saying the sentences are part of sharia. The anarchists condemn such punishment, because it is ultra-authoritarian and barbaric. Sharia-laws may be interpreted in a less authoritarian way than the present Iranian interpretation...
14.11.2009. Opposition: Iran rulers more brutal than shah. Iran's embattled opposition leaders accused the government of becoming more brutal than the shah's regime in Web statements Saturday, and authorities announced a new Internet crackdown aimed at choking off the reform movement's last real means of keeping its campaign alive. Two of Iran's top pro-reform figures said police used excessive force against anti-government protesters who took to the streets last week on the sidelines of state-sanctioned rallies to mark the 30th anniversary of the US Embassy takeover. The main opposition spokespersons Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi said authorities wielding batons even struck women on their heads. They called such treatment an ugly act that was not even seen during Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi's response to the 1979 Islamic revolution that toppled him. "I can't understand why they should treat people like this," Karroubi was quoted as saying by several opposition Web sites. "... I struggled against the Pahlavi regime for 15 years ... but there were no such crackdowns."
Such Web statements have been the mainstay of an opposition movement struggling to stay alive despite being brutally swept off the streets in the weeks after the June 12 election. In a clear effort to silence the opposition's Internet outlet, Iranian authorities announced they were deploying a special police unit to sweep Web sites for political material and prosecute those deemed to be spreading lies, Iranian media reported Saturday. Most opposition Web sites are already banned, but activists have continued to set up new sites within days of the old ones being blocked. The new 12-member police unit will report to the prosecutor's office. Police Col. Mehrdad Omidi, who heads the unit, said it will go after "insults and the spreading of lies," terms widely used by the judiciary to describe opposition activities.
"Authorities know that the Internet is one of the few available channels for the opposition to make its voice heard. They want to silence opposition voices," said reform-minded journalist Akbar Montajabi, who described the measure as the latest set of restrictions imposed on media in the country. Iran also pushed ahead Saturday with another key component in its battle with the opposition, sentencing a student activist to eight years in prison, according to the pro-opposition Web site Mowjcamp. More than 100 activists and some senior pro-reform figures have been on trial since August on charges of participating in rallies and plotting to overthrow the country's clerical rulers.
In Saturday's Web statement, Mousavi said the government's crackdown in the streets and on media won't stop Iranians from demanding civil and political freedoms and democracy. "We want political prisoners to be released," Mousavi said. "We want guarantees for healthy elections. We want freedom of the press and speech. ... Islam is the religion of logic, not the religion of breaking pens and mass closures of newspapers." Mousavi and Karroubi touched on an extremely sensitive point in their comments likening the government to the shah's regime.
Iran's Islamic leadership has repeatedly denounced the US-backed shah's rule as dictatorial and brutal. In some cases, the shah's forces opened fire on crowds of demonstrators and many political prisoners said they suffered extensive torture in prisons. Now, political activists say the treatment of detainees is even harsher. Karroubi has even said he has received information that detained protesters - men and women - have been savagely raped by their jailers to the point of physical and mental damage.
The opposition's presence on the Internet, however, kept a spotlight on the crackdown for weeks after the June vote, as Web users posted minute-by-minute updates and amateur video on sites like Twitter and Facebook. Revolutionary Guard chief Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, whose forces were the most potent weapon in crushing the massive protests, said Saturday that Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei praised the Guard for "putting an end to sedition," according to the official IRNA news agency.
The student activist sentenced to jail on Saturday, Abdollah Momeni, was convicted of acts against the security of Iran and of participating in protests, the Mowjcamp opposition site reported. The Web site quoted his wife, Fatemeh Adinehvand, as saying that the sentence was unjust and denying that Momeni ever joined any of the street protests. Momeni was the spokesman for a university student organization called the Office for Fostering Unity. He was arrested on June 21 at the campaign headquarters of Karroubi, who also ran for president in June.
17.11.1009. Iran sentences 5 to death in postelection turmoil. Iran has sentenced five defendants to death in a mass trial of opposition figures accused of fomenting the unrest that followed the disputed June presidential election, state television reported Tuesday. The five apparently include three death sentences announced last month. None of the five have been identified by Iranian authorities. Iran began the mass trial in August of more than 100 prominent opposition figures and activists, accusing them of a range of charges from rioting to spying and plotting what Iran's clerical rulers falsely have depicted as a foreign-backed plot to oust them from power. As mentioned in the weeks following the June 12 election, the opposition led massive street protests that drew hundreds of thousands and supporters clashed with security forces. A harsh crackdown ended the demonstrations and a security sweep went far beyond rounding up just protesters on the streets, snatching up rights activists and journalists, as well as pro-reform politicians. Rights groups and opposition figures in Iran have criticized the court proceedings, calling them a "show trial" and saying confessions are coerced.
A Justice Department statement said the five sentenced to death were members of "terrorist and armed opposition groups," state television reported. The statement said courts have sentenced a total of 89 defendants since the process began and 81 of them got prison terms ranging from six months up to 15 years. Three others were acquitted. "So far, 89 of defendants were tried and based on their cases, death sentences were issued for five of them," the statement said. It said the 81 sentenced to prison terms were charged with a range of offenses from security violations, agitating against the Islamic Republic, violating law and order, damaging public and private property, and assaulting civilians and security forces.
Despite the crackdown, the government has stopped short of indicting the most visible opposition spokespersons, presidential candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi, but there have been signs in recent weeks that could change. Three defendants were sentenced to death last month. Two were convicted of membership in a monarchist group seeking to topple the Islamic Republic and restore a monarchy. The third was convicted of ties to a terrorist group for his alleged links to the People's Mujahedeen, an armed opposition group. Amnesty International identified one of them as Mohammad Reza Ali Zamani, 37. It said he was convicted of charges including leaving the country illegally to meet with US military officials in Iraq. Amnesty said it was concerned the ruling against Zamani could open the way for more death sentences for those accused of similar crimes, and the rights group appealed to the authorities to rescind the ruling. Zamani testified in August that he met with a US intelligence agent called "Frank" in Irbil, the capital of Iraq's self-governing Kurdish region, and received money and a phone from him in return for information on the Iranian government and student movements, according to state media reports at the time.
Also last month, Iran ignored appeals by US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and rock star Sting and sentenced an Iranian-American academic Kian Tajbakhsh to 12 years in prison for his alleged role in the anti-government protests. He was the only American detained in the crackdown. At the same time, Iran allowed another defendant to leave the country - Canadian-Iranian Maziar Bahari, a Newsweek journalist arrested in the same crackdown. Another defendant is a young French academic, Clotilde Reiss, charged with spying. The 24-year-old was questioned before a judge Tuesday but then allowed to return to the French Embassy, rather than prison, a French official said. In August, Reiss was handed over to the embassy after paying bail but was barred from leaving Iran. A week ago, Iran refused to provide assurances that she would not be returned to Evin prison, where she spent a month-and-a-half following her arrest. France's foreign minister wanted the Iranians to guarantee she would be released after the hearing to the French Embassy. Last week, Tehran's top prosecutor said the brother-in-law of Iran's top opposition leader Mousavi will be put on trial, months after his arrest over the unrest. In a separate case, Iran is also holding three Americans - Joshua Fattal, Shane Bauer and Sarah Shourd, who were detained in July after straying across the border from Iraq. Their families and the US government says they are innocent hikers who accidentally crossed the border. Iran recently accused them of spying, signaling Tehran intends to put them on trial. The Anarchist International is against capital punishment and other barbaric and authoritarian punishment, and condemn the 5 death sentences, see Anarchism and Human Rights, http://www.anarchy.no/anrights.html .
18.11.2009. Death of an Iran prison doctor raises suspicion. An Iranian doctor who went public with reports of tortured protesters he treated at Tehran's most feared detention facility dies, amid conflicting reports of a heart attack, a car accident or suicide - raising opposition accusations that the 26-year-old was killed. Revelations that protesters detained in Iran's postelection crackdown were tortured, some to death, were a deep embarrassment to the country's clerical rulers. Dr. Ramin Pourandarjani was pressured to change the death certificate of one of the most well known victims and later spoke to a parliament commission investigating the abuse, opposition Web sites reported. Much of the abuse took place at a facility known as Kahrizak on Tehran's outskirts, where Pourandarjani - a general practitioner - was the only doctor, serving there once a week as part of his mandatory military service.
Deaths of several protesters in custody raised outrage among the opposition and even among some conservatives who support Iran's government. Pourandarjani's death on Nov. 10 was first reported by the opposition Web sites and later confirmed by Iranian authorities. Hanif Mazroui, a reporter for the opposition news Web site Roozonline, said he was contacted by a doctor earlier this week who told him Pourandarjani had committed suicide. The doctor, a colleague of Pourandarjani, later called Mazroui back and said the cause of death was "suspicious, and (authorities) are not making it public," Mazroui said. At first, authorities announced that Pourandarjani had a heart attack in his sleep. Then they claimed he died of poisoning. Late Monday, the office of Tehran's general prosecutor Abbas Dowlatabadi said "preliminary autopsy revealed he did not die of poisoning."
Dowlatabadi ordered investigations to continue, and his office said the cause will be announced later. The doctor's father, Reza-Qoli Pourandarjani, said he didn't believe any of the causes given so far by the government in his son's death. But he didn't go as far as accusing authorities of killing his son. "Just the night before his death, my child talked to me on the phone, it was around 8 or 9 p.m. He sounded great, very dignified, displaying no sign of someone about to commit suicide," the senior Pourandarjani said in a telephone interview from his home in Tabriz in northwestern Iran. "He was even full of hope," and making plans with friends, the father said. The next day, the elder Pourandarjani received a call from the commander of Tehran's security forces informing him that his son was in a car accident with a broken leg and needed his consent to have surgery. When he traveled to Tehran, "we found out that that wasn't the case," the father said. The body was handed over to the family, and was buried in Tabriz on Sunday, but the father said he never saw the body because he was too grief-stricken.
The opposition Web site Mowjcamp cited unidentified friends and family saying authorities carried out the washing and wrapping of Pourandarjani's body before handing it over to his family - rituals usually carried out by relatives - suggesting that they wanted to hide the body. Mowjcamp and other opposition sites reported that authorities barred the family from performing an autopsy on the body. Several opposition Web sites raised concerns that Pourandarjani was killed because he knew the conditions of a number of torture victims at Kahrizak, including 24-year-old Mohsen Rouhalamini, the son of a prominent conservative figure. Rouhalamini's death in late July was the main factor raising anger among government supporters over the abuse. They said Pourandarjani also was interviewed by the parliamentary committee investigating the abuse. He told them Rouhalamini was brought to him at Kahrizak "in a dreadful state after being subjected to extreme physical torture. He was in a critical state," Mowjcamp said, citing parliament officials.
Pourandarjani said that after the youth's death, "officials in Kahrizak threatened that if I disclosed the causes of the wounds of the injured at Kahrizak, I would not be able to live," the site reported. It said Pourandarjani was detained for a week until he agreed to announce the cause of Rouhalamini's death as meningitis rather than from beatings. The Kahrizak detention facility was used to keep a large number of detainees during the early days of the mass protests that erupted against the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which the opposition said was fraudulent. Amid the anger over allegations of torture, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei ordered the facility's closure in July, saying it did not meet standards.
20.11.2009. UN committee targets Iran's rights violations. A key UN committee approved a resolution Friday urging Iran to halt the persecution of political opponents following the country's disputed presidential election and release those still detained. Citing arbitrary arrests, detentions and the disappearance of Iranians exercising their right to freedom of assembly and expression following the June 12 presidential election, the General Assembly's human rights committee adopted the resolution by a vote of 74-48 with 59 abstentions. The resolution must now be approved at a plenary session of the 192-member world body, where its adoption is virtually certain. Iran's UN Ambassador Mohammad Khazaee called the resolution "highly politically charged and motivated" and stressed that the majority of General Assembly members - 118 - did not support it. The resolution cited the "harassment, intimidation and persecution ... of opposition members, journalists and other media representatives, bloggers, lawyers, clerics, human rights defenders, academics, students and others exercising their rights to peaceful assembly and association and freedom of opinion and expression, resulting in numerous deaths and injuries."
It criticized the "violence and intimidation by government-directed militias," the government's reported use of forced confessions, its mass trials resulting in some death sentences, and the "escalation in the rate of executions in the months following the elections." It also criticized the severe restrictions on media coverage of public demonstrations and the arrest of employees of foreign embassies. The resolution urges the Iranian government to end the harassment and persecution of political opponents and release those imprisoned for their political views, again singling out those detained after the presidential election. In addition to the human right violations following the election, the resolution expresses "deep concern" at the government's increasing use of executions, death by stoning, torture, flogging and amputations, and its increasing discrimination against religious, ethnic and other minorities.
26.11.2009. The Anarchy of Norway: Iran seizes Nobel laureate Ebadi's medal. The Anarchist International condemns the confiscation of the Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi's medal and the diploma. Iranian authorities have confiscated Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi's medal, the Norwegian central administration said Thursday, accusing Iran of a shocking first in the history of the prize. The Norwegian central administration was told that Ebadi's medal was seized "within the last week or so" from a safe-deposit box in Iran along with personal effects including the diploma awarded with the medal, the Foreign Ministry said. Norwegian officials have been "in touch" with Ebadi since the incident. Ebadi, a human rights lawyer, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003 for her efforts in promoting democracy. She has long faced harassment from Iranian authorities for her activities - including a raid on her office last year in which files were confiscated.
The seizure of the medal is an expression of the Iranian government's increasingly harsh approach to anyone it considers an opponent - particularly since massive street protests that erupted following the disputed June 12 presidential election and shook the government's legitimacy. Ebadi was out of the country at the time of the vote and has not returned since, saying she is "in an effective state of exile." The opposition claims that hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's re-election was fraudulent. Ebadi urged the international community to reject the outcome and called for a new vote monitored by the United Nations. She has strongly criticized the clerical leadership's postelection crackdown on dissent. As mentioned during the past months, hundreds of pro-reform activists have been arrested, and a mass trial has sentenced dozens to prison terms. Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre called the move "shocking" and said it was "the first time a Nobel Peace Prize has been confiscated by national authorities."
The Foreign Ministry summoned Iran's charge d'affaires in Norway Wednesday to protest the confiscation. The Foreign Ministry also "expressed grave concern" about Ebadi's husband, who it said was arrested in Tehran and "severely beaten" earlier this fall, after which his pension and bank account were frozen. The lawyer has represented opponents of Iran's regime before but not in the mass trial that started in August of more than 100 prominent pro-reform figures and activists. They are accused of plotting to overthrow the cleric-led regime during the postelection turmoil. The Iranian Embassy in Norway refrained from giving a comment. The Norwegian Nobel Committee's permanent secretary Geir Lundestad said the move was "unheard of" and "unacceptable." He said that the committee was planning to send a letter of protest to Iranian authorities before the end of the week.
Ebadi said in an interview published Nov. 17 in the Italian daily Corriere della Sera that her apartment, pension and her bank account and those of her relatives had been seized, along with her Nobel and Legion of Honor. "I live in an effective state of exile," she was quoted as saying from a hotel in New York, where she had been attending UN meetings. "They say I owe them $410,000 in back taxes because of the Nobel; it's a complete lie, given that the Iranian fiscal law says that prizes are excluded." She nevertheless said she plans to return to Iran when she can be more useful in the country than outside it. "Nothing frightens me any more, even if they threaten to arrest me for fiscal evasion upon my return," she said. The Anarchist International condemns the confiscation of the Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi's medal and the diploma.
27.11.2009. Iran tells the Anarchy of Norway to stay out of Nobel medal row. Iran summoned Norway's ambassador Friday and said the country had no right to criticize the Islamic Republic for confiscating Nobel Peace laureate Shirin Ebadi's medal.Iran's foreign ministry spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, said Friday that Norway has no right to criticize Iran for enforcing its tax laws. He said Norwegian officials are trying to "justify ignorance and avoidance" of paying tax. Iran's official news agency IRNA said authorities had summoned the Norwegian ambassador in response to the "interventionist stance" by Norway's foreign minister, Jonas Gahr Støre, "in support of Ebadi's illegal activities." On Friday, the French Foreign Ministry called on Iran to return the medal "without delay." Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said the Nobel medal and diploma "consecrate the courageous combat by Shirin Ebadi, notably in favor of Iranian civil society." The seizure of her prize is an expression of the Iranian government's harsh approach to anyone it considers an opponent - particularly since the massive street protests triggered by hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's disputed June 12 re-election, and has in reality nothing to do with taxation, the Anarchist International declares.
04.12.2009. Demonstrations Monday 07.12.2009. As they gear up for a major anti-government protest Monday, Iranian students are besieged by a clampdown in the universities, with a wave of arrests and expulsions. At the same time, authorities are intensifying enforcement of Islamic morals on women's dress and men's hair length as a way to punish political dissent. The authorities have cracked down at campuses nationwide to prevent the demonstrations from becoming widespread and students are recruited by the pro-government Basij militiamen, a fascist gang, are on the watch, informing on classmates suspected of being pro-opposition "troublemakers." On Thursday police warned of a tough response, especially if demonstrators try to move outside campuses into the streets. "Any gathering or ceremony outside the designated places will be considered illegal and police will take necessary steps," a statement said. The anarchists repeat the call for a velvet revolution - not ochlarchical!
06.12.2009. "Death to the Dictator!" Government opponents shouted "Allahu Akbar" and "Death to the Dictator" from Tehran's rooftops in the pouring rain on the eve of student demonstrations planned for Monday. Authorities choked off Internet access and warned journalists working for foreign media to stick to their offices for the next three days. The measures were aimed at depriving the opposition of its key means of mobilizing the masses as Iran's clerical rulers keep a tight lid on dissent. Government opponents are seeking, nonetheless, to get large numbers of demonstrators to turn out Monday and show their movement still has momentum. Opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi threw his support behind the student demonstrations and declared that his movement is still alive. A statement posted on his Web site said the clerical establishment cannot silence students and was losing legitimacy in the Iranian people's minds. The anarchists say: "Demonstrate with dignity - not ochlarchy!"
07.12.2009. Gunfire at Iran protest rally. Iranian security forces have clashed violently with opposition supporters in central Tehran, witnesses say. Police used batons and tear gas, according to the witnesses. There were also unconfirmed reports of security forces using live rounds. State media confirmed there had been clashes, though a foreign media ban means details are hard to verify. The violence came on the day that Iran holds an annual commemoration for the killing of three students in 1953. Early on Monday, hundreds of Iranian police were reported to have surrounded Tehran University to try to block protests. Iranian security forces, including the elite Revolutionary Guards. fascist gangs, had warned that they would step in to prevent any attempt to use the event to stage opposition protests. After the election the chants were only about people getting their votes back, but now it is more about the system and leaders themselves. They have cracked down hard on protests following the disputed election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in June. As mentioned the election led to the largest street protests since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, with thousands arrested and dozens killed. The government then banned protests, and its opponents began using officially sanctioned demonstrations to turn out in big numbers and publicise their message.
Tens of thousands of students, many shouting "Death to the Dictator!" and burning pictures of Iran's supreme leader, took to the streets on more than a dozen campuses Monday in the biggest anti-government protests in months. Riot police and pro-government Basij militiamen, fascist gangs, on fleets of motorcycles flooded Tehran's main thoroughfares, beating men and women with clubs as crowds of demonstrators hurled bricks and stones. Some protesters set tires and garbage cans ablaze. "Death to the oppressor, whether it's the shah or the leader!" the students chanted, according to witnesses - making a daring comparison between Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the pro-US shah, despised in Iran since his overthrow in the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The protests reflected how university students - the driving force of the 1979 Islamic Revolution - have revitalized the anti-government movement even as mainstream opposition politicians struggle to dent the power of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Iran's clerical leadership.
Protests against Khamenei. On Monday, clashes were reported in Vali Asr Square and other areas in the centre of Tehran. As in previous protests, opposition supporters, some wearing green scarves and masks, chanted "Death to the Dictator". Green is the colour adopted by the reformist movement in recent months. Police and militiamen responded by beating protesters and firing tear gas, and dozens of people were arrested, witnesses said. Security forces were trying to prevent students from leaving Tehran University campus and joining protests, according to Amirkabir website, which is run by reformist students. Iran's Irna state news agency said: "Some rioters who aimed at exploiting the special ceremonies to mark Student Day gathered in the streets surrounding Tehran University and clashed with law enforcement forces." Photos showed student supporters of the regime scuffling with reformists inside the campus. Protests were also reported at Tehran's Amir Kabir and Sharif universities. Reports from numerous different sources says that live rounds had been fired, with some claiming the government had used them without provocation. Iranian authorities say they do not use live rounds against protesters. Mowjcamp, a reformist website, said security forces had fired into the air to disperse people in Enqelab Square. There have been reports of student protests in cities across Iran, including Arak, Shiraz, Mashhad, Kerman and Isfahan. One report said students were protesting not only against President Ahmadinejad, but also Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, which would be highly unusual. In Tehran, authorities shut down mobile phone networks to stop opposition supporters from communicating with each other, an opposition website said. In the days before the rally, Tehran residents said that they had been unable to use e-mail and that opposition websites were being more tightly restricted than before.
Mourning mothers. As restrictions have increased, activists have moved away from new media, using leaflets, CDs and word of mouth instead. As mentioned dozens of people have been given jail terms and as many as five people have been sentenced to death following the post-election demonstrations. At the weekend, more than 20 people were arrested at a regular protest by a group of women that includes mothers whose sons and daughters were killed in post-election violence. Some of the women were later released. On Sunday, former presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, who emerged as a leader for reformist opponents to the regime, said the protest movement was still alive. In a statement posted on his website, he warned that authorities were "fighting with shadows in the streets". The annual Students Day event on Monday commemorates the death of students during an anti-American protest in 1953. As protests were reported, Iranian state TV was broadcasting a round-table discussion about how loyal students are to the system.
OFFICIAL EVENTS USED FOR OPPOSITION PROTESTS
10.12.2009. Victory for anarchist action, the Nobel Peace Prize medal and diploma confiscated by Iran from laureate Shirin Ebadi have been returned. As mentioned the Islamic Republic confiscated the Iranian human rights lawyer's 2003 Nobel medal and diploma last month, but they have now been delivered back to Ebadi. The confiscation was condemned by officials of the Anarchy of Norway, the Anarchist International and others, see report of 26.11.2009 above.
11.12.2009. Iranian hard-liners hold pro-government rallies. Thousands of Iranian government supporters staged rallies Friday to denounce opposition students who burned photos of the country's supreme leader in protests this week.
12.12.2009. Iranian clerics rally to support supreme leader.Tens of thousands of hard-line clerics rallied in cities across Iran on Saturday to denounce student protesters who burned photos of the country's supreme leader in a taboo-shattering act earlier in the week. The rallies were a second day of protest by government supporters outraged by the destruction of photos of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, whom hard-liners falsely believe is answerable only to God and above reproach. Authorities consider any criticism of him to be an insult to Islam and punishable by long jail terms. The act by students at the core of Iran's opposition on Monday was a reflection of how a protest movement that began by rejecting President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's June 12 re-election as fraudulent has evolved to confront the country's ruling hierarchy. In one of Saturday's demonstrations in response to the students' actions, hard-line clerics in the southern city of Shiraz shouted, "Long live Khamenei, our leader." In the holy city of Qom, there were chants of "death to opponents of the rule of the jurist (Khamenei)." The rallies were broadcast on state TV, which also aired Monday's images showing some students burning Khamenei's photo during demonstrations on university campuses - igniting the rage of hard-liners.
15.12.2009. Iranian students stage rival rallies across nation. Iran on Tuesday witnessed dueling student protests at universities in the ongoing fallout over footage showing the burning of a picture of the Islamic republic's founder Khomeini. State television has repeatedly shown images, ostensibly taken during opposition protests on Dec. 7, of unidentified hands burning the picture of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, a shocking action for most Iranians. Hundreds of students demonstrated at Tehran's Science and Technology University contending the images were fabricated by government agents to discredit the opposition, the reformist Web Site Mowjcamp reported. Students in the protest carried pictures of both Khomeini, who remains widely revered, and opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi. Similar protests also took place at Qom university, 65 miles (105 kilometers) south of Tehran.
The official Iranian news agency, meanwhile, reported some 700 pro-government students gathered at the Tehran branch of Azad University to protest the desecration of Khomeini's photo and were challenged by 100 pro-reform students. The actions of the students reflect how a protest movement that began by rejecting President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's June 12 re-election has evolved to a constant challenge to the country's ruling hierarchy. State TV on Tuesday also said there were pro-government demonstrations throughout the country denouncing the insult to Khomeini. Reformists, including former presidential candidate Mousavi, maintain that their supporters had nothing to do with the burning of the picture, which they say is being used by the government as an excuse for further crackdowns.
On Monday Tehran prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said authorities had arrested several people on accusations of being involved in destroying the image. Dolatabadi also said on Tuesday he was filing a lawsuit against two Web sites and their license holders for insulting Ahmadinejad, state TV reported. The suits target the conservative Jahannews and Alef news Web sites, the report said. The president has frequently faced criticism from within his own conservative camp, where some see him as monopolizing power and handing posts to close associates. The lawsuit appears to be part of a government crackdown on dissent launched amid the turmoil since June's disputed presidential election. The crackdown has mainly targeted pro-reform and opposition figures, who claim Ahmadinejad won the election by fraud. Alef belongs to lawmaker Ahmad Tavakoli, who has often criticized Ahmadinejad and last year led a campaign against his then-interior minister, who resigned after it was revealed he had a fake doctorate from Britain's Oxford University. Jahannews asserted in October that Ahmadinejad helped foment Iran's postelection unrest with his rhetoric against opponents. Iran also has a long history of attacks on media. Authorities have banned hundreds of newspapers, magazines and Web sites and arrested dozens of journalists and bloggers since 2000.
19.12.2009. Iran acknowledges prisoners were beaten to death. After months of denials, Iran acknowledged Saturday that at least three people detained in the country's postelection turmoil were beaten to death by their jailers. The surprise announcement by the hard-line judiciary confirmed one of the opposition's most devastating and embarrassing claims against authorities and the Revolutionary Guard fascist gang that led the crackdown after June's disputed presidential vote. There was no immediate public reaction from the opposition, but some activists asserted that authorities under pressure over abuse claims were merely seeking to punish low ranking staff while shielding senior level officials who the opposition says are most to blame. Still, the statement offered some rare vindication for the government's critics, who had rejected earlier explanations from the police and the judiciary that the detainees' deaths were caused by illnesses like meningitis, not physical mistreatment.
"The coroner's office has rejected that meningitis was the cause of the deaths and has confirmed the existence of signs of repeated beatings on the bodies and has declared that the wounds inflicted were the cause of the deaths," the judiciary statement said, according to the Web site of Iran's state TV. The judiciary also said it has charged 12 officials at Kahrizak prison - three of them with murder, but it did not identify them. The prison, on the southern outskirts of the capital, Tehran, was at the center of the opposition's claims that prisoners were tortured and raped in custody. Anger over the abuse claims, which emerged in August, extended far beyond the reformist camp, with influential conservative figures in the clerical hierarchy condemning the mistreatment of detainees. The outrage forced Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to order the immediate closure of the Kahrizak facility.
The opposition says at least 72 protesters were killed in the postelection crackdown, but the government puts the number of confirmed dead at 30. Authorities initially tried to repel the abuse claims by accusing the opposition of running a campaign of lies against the ruling system. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had even accused Iran's enemies of being involved in the crimes, a claim the opposition rejected as ridiculous. Iran's police chief, Gen. Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam, said in August that protesters were beaten by their jailers at Kahrizak, but he maintained at the time that the deaths were not caused by the abuse. The opposition's criticism was implicitly aimed at the country's most powerful military force, the Revolutionary Guard, which operates with some autonomy from the ruling clerics and led the harsh crackdown and detention of protesters in the tense weeks after the election.
Pressure around the abuse claims accelerated in early August. One of the other pro-reform candidates defeated in the election, Mahdi Karroubi, said then that he had received reports from former military commanders and other senior officials that some detainees, male and female, were raped in custody to the point of physical and mental injury. It also emerged that one of the detainees who had died in custody was the son of Abdolhossein Rouhalamini, a top aide to conservative presidential candidate Mohsen Rezaei. That was a central factor in raising anger among government supporters. His son, Mohsen Rouhalamini, was arrested during a July 9 protest and taken two weeks later to a hospital where he died within hours. Saturday's judiciary announcement named him as one of the three people it had found to be victims of abuse. The other two were identified as Amir Javadi and Mohammad Kamrani.
Further adding to the outcry, prosecutors said this month that a doctor who exposed the torture of jailed protesters died of poisoning from a delivery salad laced with an overdose of blood pressure medication. Their findings fueled opposition suspicions that he was killed because of what he knew. The 26-year-old doctor, Ramin Pourandarjani, had testified to a parliamentary committee, reportedly telling them that one of the protesters he treated was the younger Rouhalamini and that he died from severe torture. He said he was also forced by security officials to list the cause of death as meningitis, according to opposition Web sites. Pourandarjani died on Nov. 10 in mysterious circumstances, and authorities initially gave conflicting explanations, saying he was in a car accident, had a heart attack or committed suicide. Forensic tests later showed that the doctor died of "poisoning by drugs" that matched doses of propranolol found in a salad that was delivered to him, Tehran prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi said early this month.
The government's rivals did not immediately respond directly to the judiciary's statement Saturday. One prominent reformist voice, former President Mohammad Khatami, told an audience of academics in western Iran on Saturday that the use of force against protesters demonstrates the government has little regard for human rights. "A majority of the people are dissatisfied with the way the country is being administered," his Web site quoted him as saying. He added that "a considerable portion of society" has objections over the official election results. "These must be heard. They (people) must be convinced that the elections were really fair. Such convincing can't be achieved through jail, crackdowns and restrictions," Khatami said. Iran's judiciary has also had a central role in authorities' efforts to silence the opposition. Since August, it has brought to trial more than 100 protesters, activists and pro-reform opposition leaders, accusing them of fueling the protests and being part of a plot to overthrow the government.
20.1.2009. Iranian dissident cleric Montazeri dies. Iran's most senior dissident cleric, Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, who emerged as the spiritual father of its reform movement, died on Sunday. He was 87. For years, Montazeri had accused the country's ruling Islamic establishment of imposing dictatorship in the name of Islam, and he persisted with his criticism after June's disputed presidential election. His stance made him a hero to the opposition, and his criticisms were even more stinging because of his status. In a reflection of that veneration, crowds of people from the capital and other cities immediately set off to the holy city of Qom to participate in his funeral Monday, according to the pro-reform Web site Rah-e Sabz. The police presence there was also increased, the report said. Authorities faced a difficult choice over whether to try to prevent an outpouring at the funeral that could escalate into another street protest by the government's opposition. Doing so risks serious backlash from an influential group of clerics based in Qom who are among the current leadership's critics. Hoping to limit attention on the funeral, authorities banned foreign media coverage of it and barred reporters from traveling to Qom.
Montazeri's grandson, Nasser Montazeri, said he died in his sleep overnight. The Web site of Iranian state television quoted doctors as saying Montazeri had suffered from asthma and arteriosclerosis, a disease that thickens and hardens arteries. Montazeri had once been designated to succeed Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the late founder of Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution, as the supreme leader - but the two had a falling out a few months before Khomeini died of cancer in 1989. Montazeri was one of the leaders of the revolution and he helped draft the nation's new constitution, which was based on a concept called velayat-e faqih, or rule by Islamic jurists. That concept enshrined a political role for Islamic clerics in the new system. But a deep ideological rift soon developed with Khomeini. Montazeri envisioned the Islamic experts as advisers to the government - but without outright control to rule themselves. Taking the opposing view, Khomeini and his circle of clerics consolidated absolute power. Montazeri was increasingly cast by authorities as an outsider and misguided theologian.
During the late 1980s, Montazeri was gradually stripped of his official duties and became the focus of a high-level campaign to undermine his credentials as a leader and theologian. It was not Montazeri, but Ayatollah Ali Khamenei who succeeded Khomeini in 1989. In 1997, Montazeri was placed under house arrest in Qom, 80 miles (130 kilometers) south of Tehran, after saying Khamenei wasn't qualified to rule - a call echoed years later by the opposition protesters who took to the streets after June's disputed presidential vote. The penalty was lifted in 2003, but Montazeri remained defiant, saying the freedom that was supposed to follow the 1979 revolution never happened. Montazeri was one of just a few grand ayatollahs - the most senior theologians of the Shiite Muslim faith. After he was placed under house arrest, state-run media stopped referring to Montazeri by his religious title, describing him instead as a "simple-minded" cleric. Any talk about Montazeri was strongly discouraged, references to him in schoolbooks were removed and streets named after him were renamed. The official IRNA news agency issued a two-line report on Montazeri's death without mentioning his title and state radio and television broadcasters were equally terse, reflecting the deep tension between the government and its opponents.
Past deaths of high-ranking religious figures were accompanied by wide coverage in state media, along with the broadcast of condolence messages by Iranian leaders to their families and followers. After the disputed election, pro-government figures tried to reduce Montazeri's impact by spreading reports that he had become senile and that his supporters were issuing opinions in his name. Several top pro-opposition ayatollahs gathered at Montazeri's house after his death, the Gooya News Web site reported. Montazeri is expected to be buried inside the shrine of Masoumeh, a female saint revered by Shiite Muslims, according to news reports. The shrine is in the center of Qom. Montazeri was still respected by many Iranians, who observed his religious rulings or supported his calls for democratic change within the ruling establishment.
21.12.2009. "Death to the Dictator"! Tens of thousands in anti-government protest. Iran cleric's funeral turns to opposition protest. Tens of thousands of Iranian mourners turned the funeral procession of the country's most senior dissident cleric into an anti-government protest Monday, chanting "death to the dictator" and slogans in support of the opposition amid heavy security. Giant crowds filled major streets, beating their chests in mourning, waving banners in the green colors of the opposition and shouting denunciations of Iran's rulers as Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri's body was carried to a shrine in Iran's holy city of Qom. Some mourners clashed briefly with security forces, throwing stones - and hard-line pro-government militiamen, fascist gangs, charged some protesters until police held them back, opposition Web sites said. The militiamen tore down mourning banners and ripped to pieces posters of Montazeri near his home, the Hammihan Web site reported.
Iranian authorities have barred foreign media from covering the rites. The death of Montazeri on Sunday, at the age of 87, pushed Iranian authorities into a difficult spot. They were obliged to pay respects to one of the patriarchs of the 1979 Islamic Revolution and the one-time heir apparent to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. But officials also worried that his mourning rites could give a new push to opposition protests, particularly because they coincide with a week of traditional rallies commemorating a revered Shiite martyr. Montazeri broke with Iran's clerical leadership and became a vehement critic, denouncing Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and calling the postelection crackdown the work of a dictatorship.
Mourners shouted "Death to the Dictator" and other slogans in displays of anger against Iran's ruling establishment during the procession in Qom, a city of shrines and clerical seminaries about 60 miles (100 kilometers) south of Tehran, witnesses said. The witnesses spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of arrest. Marchers held aloft black-rimmed portraits of Montazeri and green banners and wrist bands in a powerful show of support for the Green Movement of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, who attended the funeral along with another prominent protest leader, Mahdi Karroubi. Footage posted on the Web showed massive crowds chanting in the streets of Qom and beating their chests in a sign of mourning, as Montazeri's body was carried in a coffin draped in black cloth around the city's main shrine several times then taken to a nearby cemetery for burial alongside his son, who died in the early days of the Islamic Revolution.
Security forces clashed with mourners shouting slogans outside Montazeri's house in Qom, and some protesters threw stones, the opposition Web site Norouz reported. It said an unspecified number of mourners were arrested. The report could not be independently confirmed, and witnesses did not report major clashes. Thousands of mourners also marched in the cleric's hometown of Najafabad, near the central city of Isfahan. Web footage showed crowds of men beating their chests and chanting, "Oppressed Montazeri, you are with God now." Women in black robes shouted, "Dictator, dictator, Montazeri is alive," and "Montazeri, you who spoke the truth: Your path will be followed."
On Monday, access to the Internet in Iran was slow, and cellular telephone service was unreliable. The government has periodically restricted communications in an attempt to prevent protesters from organizing. Authorities were clearly concerned Montazeri's death could set off a string of opposition protests linked to his funeral rites. Traditionally, memorial ceremonies are also held seven days after a death. Moreover, Montazeri's seventh day homage will fall on one of the most important Shiite religious days, marking the martyrdom of a revered 7th century leader - giving even more fuel for a rally. In another sign of efforts to silence opposition media, authorities ordered the closure of a small, liberal-leaning newspaper, Andishe-no, or New Thinking. The paper had only a limited circulation, but was one of the few reformist publications remaining. Iranian officials also have tried to block opposition Web pages and other sites.
As mentioned Montazeri broke with the regime in the 1980s after claiming that the ruling clerics violated the ideals of the revolution by taking absolute power rather than serving as advisers to political leaders. He spent five years under house arrest and had only a minor role in political affairs after being released in 2003. But the outrage after June's disputed presidential election gave him a new voice that resonated with a younger generation. His most pivotal moments came in the summer when he denounced the "despotic" tactics and "crimes" of the ruling clerics - a bold step that encouraged protesters to break taboos about criticism of Khomeini's successor, Supreme Leader Khamenei. In demonstrations earlier this month, students shouted "Death to the dictator!" and burned pictures of Khamenei - an act that was almost unthinkable just a few months ago. State television made only a passing reference to Monday's funeral and did not broadcast any images. It mentioned, however, that mourners were chanting anti-government slogans.
On Sunday, Khamenei praised Montazeri as a respected Islamic scholar, but noted his falling out with Khomeini and other leaders of the revolution. Montazeri's grandson, Nasser Montazeri, said he died in his sleep overnight. The Web site of Iranian state television quoted doctors as saying Montazeri had suffered from asthma and arteriosclerosis, a disease that thickens and hardens arteries. The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said one of Montazeri's followers and a government critic, Ahmad Ghabel, was arrested while driving to Qom with his family to attend the funeral. The New York-based group called on the government not to interfere in the commemorations. Another prominent critic, filmmaker Mohammad Nourizad, was arrested on a charge of insulting officials, the state news agency IRNA reported Sunday. Nourizad, once a conservative government supporter, wrote a letter of protest to Khamenei in September urging him to apologize to the nation for the postelection crackdown.
Montazeri was one of the leaders of the revolution and he helped draft the nation's new constitution, which was based on a concept called velayat-e faqih, or rule by Islamic jurists. That concept enshrined a political role for Islamic clerics in the new system. But a deep ideological rift soon developed with Khomeini. Montazeri envisioned the Islamic experts as advisers to the government who should not have outright control to rule themselves. He was also among those clerics who believed the power of the supreme leader comes from the people, not from God. Taking an opposing view, Khomeini and his circle of clerics consolidated absolute power.
23.12.2009. Iran forces clash with protesters in cities. An Iranian opposition website said security forces clashed with supporters of the late dissident cleric Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri in at least two cities on Wednesday, including his birthplace. Police chief Esmail Ahmadi-Moqadam said the pro-reform opposition would face "fierce" confrontation if it continued its "illegal" activities, the semi-official Fars news agency reported. Referring to the central city where Montazeri was born, the Jaras website said: "Sporadic clashes started from Tuesday night in Najafabad and still continued. The situation is tense in the city. People are chanting anti-government slogans." It also said many demonstrators were injured during clashes with security forces in the nearby city of Isfahan, which occurred on the traditional third day of mourning for Montazeri. Another reformist website, Parlemannews, said at least 50 opposition backers, including four journalists, were arrested during the clashes in Isfahan, one of Iran's biggest cities. Jaras said protesters who had gathered in Isfahan to commemorate Montazeri, a fierce critic of the hardline government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. "Police fired teargas to disperse people ... many people were injured ... some arrested," Jaras said. It also said plainclothes security agents in Isfahan surrounded the house of a leading pro-reform cleric, Ayatollah Jalaleddin Taheri. The reported incidents took place two days after huge crowds turned out in the Shi'ite holy city of Qom for the funeral of Montazeri, when many people chanted anti-government slogans, websites reported. The website reports from Isfahan and Najafabad could not be verified independently because foreign media are banned from reporting directly on protests.
Government supporters staged counter rallies in Qom on Tuesday and Wednesday, official Iranian media reported. Iran's internal unrest, highlighted by Montazeri's arguments that the leadership had lost its legitimacy, has complicated the dispute over the Iranian nuclear program, which the West believes may have military ends, not just civilian purposes. As mentioned Montazeri, who died on Saturday at the age of 87, was an architect of the 1979 revolution that overthrew the US-backed shah and was once named to succeed Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as supreme leader of the Islamic state. But Montazeri, viewed as the spiritual patron of the opposition movement that led the big protests following the June presidential election, fell from grace after criticizing the mass execution of prisoners in the late 1980s. Ahmadinejad's re-election, in the election that losing opposition candidates said was rigged, kindled the biggest unrest in the Islamic Republic's 30-year history and split the political and clerical establishment. Despite scores of arrests and security crackdowns, opposition protests have repeatedly flared up since the vote. Montazeri's death occurred in the tense run-up to Ashura, on December 27, a politically important Shi'ite religious commemoration that offers the opposition another opportunity to show its strength. Opposition backers have seized such occasions marked in the Islamic revolutionary calendar to raise their voices.
24.12.2009. Iran banned memorials for the country's most senior dissident cleric and reiterated a stern warning to the opposition Thursday, after days of services in honor of the spiritual leader turned into street protests against the government. A commemoration had been planned for Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri in the town of Kashan, 135 miles south of Tehran, according to reformist Web sites. But a large banner was put up in the town proclaiming that the Supreme National Security Council has banned any memorials for Montazeri except in the holy city of Qom and the cleric's hometown of Najafabad. The Web site Parlemannews carried a photo of the banner in Kashan. The death on Sunday of the 87-year-old Ali Montazeri, a sharp critic of Iran's leaders, has given a new push to opposition protests, which have endured despite a heavy security crackdown since disputed presidential elections in June. Iran has been in turmoil since the vote.
On Wednesday, a memorial for Montazeri in the central city of Isfahan turned into anti-government demonstrations, and mourners clashed with riot police. At least 50 were arrested, according to reformist Web sites. Security forces and hard-line militiamen assaulted the crowd gathered at Isfahan's main mosque for Wednesday's memorial, beating men and women and firing tear gas to disperse them. The reports could not be independently confirmed since authorities have banned foreign media from covering protests. The funeral procession for Montazeri in Qom on Monday also turned into a rally against the government. The memorials have brought out not only the young, urban activists who filled the ranks of earlier protests, but also older, more religious Iranians who revered Montazeri on grounds of faith as much as politics. And the government has started moving for the first time against clerics who support the opposition - in Isfahan, pro-government Basij militiamen on Wednesday surrounded the house and office of two prominent religious figures, shouting slogans and breaking windows, opposition Web sites reported.
Montazeri's death comes as Iran marks one of the most important periods on the Shiite religious calendar, the first 10 days of the Islamic month of Moharram, a time of mourning rituals for a revered Shiite saint. The period culminates on Sunday with Ashoura - a day that coincides with the seventh day after Montazeri's death, a traditional day of further commemorations. There are concerns those seven-day commemorations could fuel greater protests, especially after Iran's police chief, Gen. Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam, on Wednesday threatened tougher action against protesters. On Thursday, state TV Web site carried another Ahmadi Moghaddam warning, saying police will take a "harsh approach" against those who commit "violations that lead to disorder." The measures, he was quoted as saying, include detentions of the leaders in violent demonstrations.
Scores have been arrested in the postelection turmoil and mass trials are under way against more than 100 leading moderates, opposition figures and supporters who have disputed Ahmadinejad's re-election. In the latest trial, Abdollah Ramazanzadeh, a former government spokesman who became an opposition supporter, was sentenced to six years in prison, the semiofficial Fars news agency said Thursday. Ramazanzadeh, who served until 2004 as spokesman under reformist President Mohammad Khatami, was charged with fomenting unrest in order to topple the ruling system. The special court found him guilty of "acts against national security, propagating against the Islamic establishment and keeping classified documents," according to Fars. Also Thursday, the Central Bank of Iran urged businesses, traders and the public not to accept bank notes smeared with anti-government graffiti. Bank director in charge of local currency matters, Ebrahim Darvishi, asked people to "avoid accepting bank notes with extra words." He said banks would not accept such notes as of from Jan. 7. Bank notes with anti-government slogans have surfaced since June election across Iran. In October, CBI governor Mahmoud Bamani said writing slogans on money would be considered a crime.
26.12.2009. Riot police clash with protesters in Tehran. Political conflict and public piety converged on tension-filled streets in Tehran, Iran, on Saturday. Clashes erupted between riot police and opposition protesters as hundreds of people solemnly took part in an annual Shiite Muslim observance. The predominantly Shiite Muslim nation ruled by a Shiite hierarchy, Iran remained on the edge as the holy period of Ashura reaches its climax Sunday, when widespread protests are expected to coincide with a day of mourning for a recently deceased cleric who emerged as a champion of opposition protesters. The opposition demonstrations were the latest to erupt in the Islamic republic since the grassroots outrage over the June presidential elections. Witnesses said security forces outnumbered protesters, and scores of forces on motorcycles charged protesters on sidewalks whenever they started chanting anti-government slogans. Baton-wielding security forces bashed and bloodied at least three protesters, arrested at least two people and smashed the window of at least one car, witnesses said.
One witness reported clashes between security forces and protesters in the Nivaran area of northern Tehran, with dozens of security forces riding in tandem on motorcycles charging and attacking about 500 protesters. Traffic in the area was bumper-to-bumper, car horns sounded, people chanted anti-government slogans and at least one canister of tear gas was fired to disperse crowds. Piles of debris on side streets were lit, a practice occasionally used to diminish the effects of tear gas. One opposition Web site reported that security forces beat and injured protesters and used tear gas to disperse the crowds. A witness at the demonstrations said there were a few hundred people on the streets and disputed messages on Twitter that said tens of thousands of people were on the streets of Tehran.
The activities occurred as the Ashura holy day arrives on Sunday, and hundreds of religiously faithful people took to the streets to commemorate the holy day. That's when Shiite Muslims mark the 7th century death of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Mohammed. Hussein was killed in battle in Karbala in 680 and is regarded as a martyr. The battle that led to his death is one of the events that helped create the schism between Sunnis and Shiites, the two main Muslim religious movements. Religious mourning during Ashura is characterized by people chanting, beating their breasts in penance, cutting themselves with daggers or swords and whipping themselves in synchronized moves. Sunday marks a week to the day since the death of Grand Ayatollah Hussein Ali Montazeri, a key figure in the 1979 Iranian revolution. Montazeri, who went on to become one of the government's most vocal critics, died December 20. The seventh day after a death is a traditional time for mourning in Islam, giving Iran's opposition two reasons to demonstrate on Sunday. The anarchists once more call for demonstrations with dignity - not ochlarchy.
27.12.2009. Several killed in Iran protests. Iranian security forces fired on stone-throwing protesters in the center of the capital Sunday in one of the bloodiest confrontations in months, opposition Web sites and witnesses said. At least five people were killed. Some accounts of the violence in Tehran were vivid and detailed, but they could not be independently confirmed because of government restrictions on media coverage. Police, who denied using firearms, said dozens of officers were injured and more than 300 protesters were arrested. The dead included a nephew of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, according to Mousavi's Web site, Kaleme.ir. The clashes were sure to deepen antagonism between the government and a reform movement that has shown resilience in the face of repeated crackdowns. The street chaos coincided with commemorations of Shiite Islam's most important observance, Ashoura, fueling protesters' defiance with its message of sacrifice and dignity in the face of coercion.
Still, many demonstrators had not anticipated such harsh tactics by the authorities, despite police warnings of tougher action against any protests on the sacred day. Amateur video footage purportedly from the center of Tehran showed an enraged crowd carrying away one casualty, chanting, "I'll kill, I'll kill the one who killed my brother." In several locations, demonstrators confronted security forces, hurling stones and setting their motorcycles, cars and vans ablaze, according to video footage and pro-reform Web sites. Protesters tried to cut off roads with burning barricades. One police officer was photographed with blood streaming down his face after he was set upon by the crowd. There were unconfirmed reports that four people died in protests in Tabriz in northwest Iran, the pro-reform Rah-e-Sabz Web site said. Fierce clashes also broke out in Isfahan and Najafabad in central Iran and Shiraz in the south, it said. Mousavi's Web site said the nephew, Ali Mousavi, was shot in the back on Azadi Street, or Freedom Street, during clashes in which security forces reportedly fired on demonstrators, and was taken to Ibn Sina Hospital. It said Mousavi and other family members rushed to the hospital.
A close aide to Mousavi said Ali Mousavi died of injuries in the hospital. The aide spoke on condition of anonymity because of fears of reprisals from the government. The protests began with thousands of opposition supporters chanting "Death to the dictator" as they marched in defiance of official warnings of a harsh crackdown on any demonstrations coinciding with Ashoura. The observance commemorates the seventh-century death in battle of one of Shiite Islam's most beloved saints. Security forces tried but failed to disperse protesters on a central Tehran street with tear gas, baton charges and warning shots. They then opened fire on protesters, said witnesses and the Rah-e-Sabz Web site. The site said that in addition to Mousavi's nephew, four protesters were fatally shot - Mahdi Farhadinia, Mohammad Ali Rasekhinia, Amir Arshadi and Shahram Saraji. Witnesses said one victim was an elderly man who had a gunshot wound to the forehead. He was seen being carried away by opposition supporters with blood covering his face. More than two dozen opposition supporters were injured, some of them seriously, with limbs broken from beatings, according to witnesses.
An Iranian police statement said five people were killed in the unrest. "Experts are seeking to identify the suspicious elements," the statement said. Iran's deputy police chief, Ahmad Reza Radan, said one person died after falling from a bridge, two were killed in a car accident, and a fourth was fatally shot. "Given the fact that police did not use firearms, this incident looks completely suspicious and the case is under investigation," Radan said. He said dozens of injured police were treated in hospitals, and more than 300 "seditionists" were arrested. The clashes marked the bloodiest confrontation since the height of unrest in the weeks after June's election. Reporters from foreign media organizations were barred from covering the demonstrations on Tehran's central Enghelab Street, or Revolution Street. Video footage circulating on the Web could also not be authenticated. Ambulance sirens wailed near the site of the protests. Police helicopters circled as smoke billowed over the capital.
Cell phone services were unreliable and Internet connections were slowed to a crawl, as has happened during most other days of protest in an apparent government attempt to limit publicity and prevent protesters from organizing. The Dec. 20 death of the 87-year-old Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, a sharp critic of Iran's leaders, has given a new push to opposition protests. His memorials have brought out young, urban activists who filled the ranks of earlier protests, and older, more religious Iranians who revered the cleric. As mentioned tens of thousands marched in his funeral procession in the holy city of Qom on Monday, many chanting slogans against the government. Opposition leaders have used holidays and other symbolic days in recent months to stage anti-government rallies.
Iran is under pressure both from its domestic opposition within the country and from the United States and its European allies, which are pushing Iran to suspend key parts of its nuclear program. Foreign Minister Carl Bildt of Sweden, which holds the rotating presidency of the European Union, expressed concern about the "increased repression" in Iran. "A regime secure in its own legitimacy has no reason to fear individuals' rights to express their opinions freely and peacefully," he wrote on his blog Sunday.
US condemns violence in Iran. The United States is strongly condemning the violence in Iran, offering its support to those who seek universal rights. National Security Council spokesman Mike Hammer on Sunday denounced Tehran's "unjust suppression of civilians" in a crackdown that has killed at least four people, including the nephew of an opposition leader. Hammer says governing through fear and violence is not just. Hammer quoted President Barack Obama's Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, saying "it is telling when governments fear the aspirations of their own people more than the power of any other nation." Witnesses and opposition Web sites said Iranian security forces on Sunday engaged in the fiercest clashes with anti-government protesters in months. The anarchists condemn the violence by the ultra-authoritarian, totalitarian right fascist, extremist regime in Iran.
28.12.2009. Iran steps up crackdown on opposition. Opposition activists said Iranian security forces rounded up at least seven prominent activists on Monday, stepping up a crackdown on the country's pro-reform movement a day after reported eight people, including the nephew of the chief opposition leader, were killed in anti-government protests. The bloodshed, some of the heaviest in months, drew an especially harsh condemnation from one opposition leader, who compared the government to the brutal regime that was ousted by the Islamic Revolution three decades ago. Monday's developments were sure to deepen antagonism between the government and the reform movement, which has repeatedly shown resilience in the face of repeated crackdowns since June's disputed presidential election. Mahdi Karroubi, an opposition leader who ran in the June election, posted a statement on an opposition Web site asking how the government could spill the blood of its people on the Shiite sacred day of Ashoura. He said even the former government of the hated shah respected the holy day.
The government crackdown has attracted a growing chorus of international criticism. On Monday, Germany's foreign minister, Guido Westerwelle, condemned the "brutal action" by security forces. "I am calling on those responsible in Tehran to do everything in order to avoid a further escalation of the situation and to end the violence," he said. "The international community will watch and not look away." Sunday's violence erupted when security forces fired on stone-throwing protesters in the center of Tehran. Opposition Web sites and witnesses said five people were killed, but Iran's state-run Press TV, quoting the Supreme National Security Council, said the death toll was eight. It gave no further details. As mentioned the dead included a nephew of chief opposition leader Mir Mousavi, according to Mousavi's Web site, Kaleme.ir. Police denied using firearms. Opposition Web sites and activists said security forces raided a series of opposition offices on Monday, making at least seven arrests.
The Parlemannews site said three of Moussavi's top aides were rounded up, including his top adviser, Ali Riza Beheshti. Security forces also stormed a foundation run by reformist former President Mohammad Khatami and arrested two people, a foundation official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of fears of police reprisal. The Baran Foundation works to promote dialogue between civilizations. In another move, former Foreign Minister Ebrahim Yazdi and human rights activist Emad Baghi were arrested, according to the Rah-e-Sabz Web site. Yazdi, who served as foreign minister after the 1979 Islamic revolution, is now leader of the banned but tolerated Freedom Movement of Iran. The arrests could not be independently confirmed. Some accounts of the violence Sunday in Tehran were vivid and detailed, but they could not be independently confirmed because of government restrictions on media coverage. Police said dozens of officers were injured and more than 300 protesters were arrested.
The street chaos coincided with commemorations of Ashoura, fueling protesters' defiance with its message of sacrifice and dignity in the face of coercion. The observance commemorates the 7th-century death in battle of one of Shiite Islam's most beloved saints. Still, many demonstrators had not anticipated such harsh tactics by the authorities, despite police warnings of tougher action against any protests on the sacred day. The clashes marked the bloodiest confrontation since the height of unrest in the weeks after June's election. The Dec. 20 death of the 87-year-old Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, a sharp critic of Iran's leaders, has given a new push to opposition protests. Opposition leaders have used holidays and other symbolic days in recent months to stage anti-government rallies.
Iranian authorities said Monday that they were holding the bodies of five slain anti-government protesters, including the nephew of the opposition leader, in what appeared be an attempt to prevent activists from using their funerals as a platform for more demonstrations. Pro-reform Web sites and activists said the government also detained at least eight prominent opposition figures - including a former foreign minister - in an intensified crackdown that could fuel more violence of the kind that engulfed the center of Tehran on Sunday. The activity pushed the bitterly opposed camps beyond any immediate prospect of reconciliation or compromise. Hardliners, including clerical groups and the elite Revolutionary Guard, a fascist gang, issued statements urging the country's judiciary to take action against the opposition for violating Islamic principles and insulting the head of Iran's religious leadership, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The anarchists once more condemn the violence by the ultra-authoritarian, totalitarian right fascist, extremist regime in Iran.
US calling friends, allies on Iran sanctions. A top national security official says the United States is reaching out to international partners in an effort to build support for a new round of sanctions against Iran's regime. National Security Council chief of staff Denis McDonough told reporters the administration will revisit its options against Iran in the new year and is gauging the views of US friends and allies about "the next step in the process." McDonough says both unilateral or United Nations sanctions are options. Earlier in the day, Obama spoke about the flaring violence in Tehran. He praised "the courage and the conviction of the Iranian people" while condemning Iran's Islamic government for attacking demonstrators with "the iron fist of brutality."
29.12.2009. Tens of thousands of government supporters rallied on Tuesday, state media said, and a reformist party called on Iran's rulers to apologize to the nation two days after eight people were killed in anti-government protests. The rallies on Tuesday called for the punishment of opposition leaders for fomenting unrest after June's disputed presidential poll which was won by hard-liner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, state media reported. The Revolutionary Guards, a fascist gang, accused the foreign media of joining hands with the opposition to harm the Islamic state and the British ambassador to Tehran was summoned by the Iranian government to be accused of "interference" in state matters. "If Britain does not stop talking nonsense it will get a slap in the mouth," Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said. The British government said their envoy would respond "robustly" to any criticism. On Monday, UK Foreign Secretary David Miliband hailed the "great courage" of the protesters and said it had been "particularly disturbing to hear accounts of the lack of restraint by the security forces" on Ashura, one of the holiest days in the Shia calendar. The Revolutionary Guards, a fascist force tasked with defending the country's Islamic fascist system, falelsy accused foreign media of joining hands with the opposition and staging a "psychological war".
The establishment intensified a crackdown on the reform movement on Sunday by rounding up leading moderates to try to end street protests after the deadly weekend clashes erupted during the Shi'ite Muslim religious ritual of Ashura. At least 20 opposition figures have been arrested since Sunday, including three senior advisers to opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi, his brother-in-law and a sister of Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi, opposition websites reported. Ebadi confirmed her sister's arrest. Political turmoil has entered a new phase in Iran with bloody face-offs and arrests, with security forces calling on authorities to deal "firmly" with opposition leaders. "Trying to overthrow the system will reach nowhere ... designers of the unrest will soon pay the cost of their insolence," the Revolutionary Guards said in a statement. "The opposition, which has joined hands with the foreign media, is backed by foreign enemies." The wife of another opposition leader, Mehdi Karoubi, who was fourth in the vote, said the establishment "was responsible for the safety of her family," the opposition Jaras website said. "My family and I do not enjoy any security against the rogue forces' nightly attacks," said Fatemeh Karoubi.
In a heated war of words, the reformist Islamic Iran's Participation Front said in a statement: "The only way out of the current crisis is for the authorities to respect the law and apologize to the nation." Tens of thousands of people on Tuesday chanted "We are ready to sacrifice our lives for our Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali Khamenei]," state television reported, saying the nationwide demonstrations had taken place spontaneously. "Demonstrators demand the punishment of those behind Sunday's protests which insulted religion," state television reported, referring to the protests taking place during Ashura.
Jaras said fresh clashes took place at a Tehran university and also in the central city of Shiraz between students and security forces. The reports could not be independently verified because of restrictions on foreign media covering protests. Iranian authorities say eight people were killed in clashes on Sunday when supporters of Mousavi used the Ashura religious festival to stage fresh anti-government rallies. Police said the "suspicious deaths" were being investigated, adding dozens of security men were injured in the clashes. Authorities falsely blame what they call foreign-backed "terrorist groups" for the killings, including the death of Mousavi's nephew Ali Habibi Mousavi Khamene. "What happened on Ashura day was an unsuccessful pre-planned scenario to harm the Islamic state's image and weaken the system," the semi-official Fars news agency quoted the head of the volunteer Basij militia, a fascist gang, Mohammadreza Naqdi, as saying.
Parliament speaker Ali Larijani urged the judiciary to arrest those behind the anti-government rally on Sunday. "Identify them, arrest them and firmly punish those who insulted religion," Larijani said, according to state television, calling on opposition leaders to refrain from igniting tension. When the June 12 presidential election returned Ahmadinejad to power by a wide margin, thousands of Iranians took to the streets in the biggest anti-government demonstrations in the 30-year history of the Islamic Republic. Street protests have shown no sign of abating since the vote. Opposition website Jaras said more than 900 protesters were arrested on Sunday in Tehran and the central city of Isfahan. Police said 300 people had been arrested in Tehran. Iran's government falsely postulates that the violent opposition protests across the country on Sunday, in which at least eight people were killed, were inspired and aided by the West. Fascist MPs have demanded "maximum punishment" for those involved.
The nephew of Iran's opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi was threatened days before he was killed in Sunday's protests, a prominent supporter says. Mohsen Makhmalbaf, a film-maker based in Paris, told the BBC that secret police called Seyed Ali Mousavi several times, saying: "We will kill you." But a police statement reportedly said Mr Mousavi was killed by "terrorists". This is a lie. Meanwhile a regional representative of Iran's supreme leader said opposition leaders should be executed. "Those who are behind the current sedition in the country ... are mohareb [enemies of God] and the law is very clear about punishment of a mohareb," state media quoted Ayatollah Abbas Vaez-Tabasi, an influential figure in Khorasan province, as saying. The sentence for mohareb under Iran's Sharia law is death. Earlier Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad falsely accused Western countries of organizing the protests. Tehran has rejected international calls for it to halt the crackdown. The Irna news agency quoted Mr Ahmadinejad as [falsely] describing the opposition rallies as a "nauseating masquerade". "Iranians have seen lots of these games," he falsely postulated. "Americans and Zionists are the sole audience of a play they have commissioned and sold out." Listen Khamenei! The anarchists declare that international solidarity actions for the opposition are not intervention by foreign powers!
30.12.2009. Hundreds of thousands at pro-government rallies in Iran. Hundreds of thousands of government supporters rallied across Iran on Wednesday, swearing allegiance to the clerical establishment and accusing opposition leaders of causing unrest in the Islamic state. Iran's police chief warned supporters of opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi only to expect harsh treatment if they joined illegal anti-government rallies, three days after eight protesters were killed in demonstrations. Hundreds of thousands took part in the government-organized demonstrations, which state television broadcast live, chanting slogans against the opposition spokespersons Mousavi and moderate defeated presidential candidate Mehdi Karoubi. "You should repent ... otherwise the system will confront you as a 'mohareb' (enemy of God)," cleric Ahmad Alamolhoda told a Tehran rally, directing his remarks at reformist leaders, state TV reported. As mentioned under Iran's sharia (Islamic law) the sentence for a mohareb is death. In Tehran, crowds burned American and British flags, condemning what they said was interference by Washington and London in Iran's internal affairs.
Semi-official Fars news agency said a group of hardliners gathered in front of the British embassy in Tehran, chanting "the British embassy should be closed down". Iran's top authority falsely accused "the West" of basing its actions toward Iran on "distorted realities". "They are under influence of foreign and Zionist (linked to Israel) news agencies' reports," Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said, the students news agency ISNA reported. There was no word of any opposition supporters on the streets on Wednesday, despite talk of demonstrations on reformist websites. Foreign media are restricted from moving around to report on such protests, which are illegal. As mentioned in Iran's bloodiest unrest since the aftermath of the disputed June 12 presidential election, eight people were killed on Sunday and at least 20 pro-reform figures, including three senior advisers to Mousavi, were arrested. Anarchists and United Nations Human Rights chief Navi Pillay called on the Tehran government on Wednesday to curb excess use of force by its security services and expressed shock over the violence [from the fascist regime]. Anarchists and the United States and its European allies have condemned Iran over Sunday's clashes.
Television footage of Wednesday's rallies in various cities showed people chanting "Mousavi is responsible for bloodshed ... We support our Supreme Leader". Some of them carried pictures of Khamenei. "People want the leaders of sedition to be punished. We will not remain silent over insulting the religion," one speaker told a Tehran rally, state TV reported. "We have asked the judiciary to arrest the leaders of this sedition," said hardline MP Hasan Norouzi, without saying just how many lawmakers made the demand. "Karoubi, Mousavi and all those who ignite tension should be arrested and tried." The semi-official Fars news agency said Mousavi's nephew, who was killed in Sunday's bloodshed, was buried on Wednesday at Tehran's Behesht-e Zahra cemetery. Iran's police chief said "there was no more room for tolerance over participants in illegal rallies". "Those who participate in illegal rallies will be confronted more harshly and the judiciary will confront them more decisively," said Esmail Ahmadi-Moqadam, the official IRNA news agency reported. "Some of Sunday's protesters are ... considered as mohareb and will be confronted firmly." Pro-government demonstrators also chanted "Death to America" and "Death to Britain", state TV reported. Iran, locked in a row with the West over its nuclear program, has falsely accused foreign powers of meddling in its affairs, provoking robust denials. The Anarchist International supports the opposition, and once more calls for a velvet revolution: Do away with the fascist regime!
CNN reports: Video purportedly shows Iranian police running over person at protest. An Internet video from what its posters said was one of the anti-government demonstrations last weekend in Iran shows police vehicles driving into crowds of protesters and running over at least one. In the video -- shot Sunday, according to the posting on the Web site YouTube -- green-and-white police trucks rush into crowds of protesters in the capital, Tehran. Demonstrators scatter, but one truck drives into a crowd trapped in a narrow street with a wall on one side and parked cars on the other. The camera follows the truck as it backs away, and a person briefly can be seen crumpled in the street where the truck had been. When the camera returns to the spot, another police truck drives over the person. Other protesters rush to the downed person's aid; it was not clear whether that person was killed. CNN cannot confirm the authenticity of the video, or another one obtained by CNN that shows a woman who was reportedly killed when hit by a car driven by members of the Basij, an Iranian paramilitary group. That video shows protesters transferring her body from a clinic near where she was reportedly killed to another hospital to keep her remains out of reach of security forces.
Iranian reformist leaders Mir Hossein Moussavi and Mehdi Karouobi are reported to have left Tehran. The circumstances of their departure remain shrouded in mystery. The official IRNA news agency says they have fled voluntarily to the north of the country after seeing a "surge of anger from people who desire to punish". But an opposition website claims the pair have been forcibly removed from the capital by members of the Revolutionary Guard and Intelligence Ministry officials, fascist gangs. They are said to have been taken to the city of Kelar Abad. As pro-government rallies take place in Iran, opposition supporters are being warned to give up their plans for further protest. The country's police chief has told the opposition to expect what he called harsh treatment if they try to demonstrate. The clerical leadership is attempting to reimpose strict rule after clashes over the weekend left at least eight people dead. Numerous opposition figures have been detained. Despite restrictions on the foreign media, the internet and mobile phone services, amateur video footage of the violence continues to emerge. The reformist opposition is vowing to hold further demonstrations, saying crackdowns are only making their resolve stronger.
31.12.2009. Iran prosecutor threatens opposition with trials. Iran's state prosecutor warned opposition leaders Thursday they could face trial if they do not denounce this week's anti-government protests - the worst unrest since the aftermath of June's disputed presidential election. The prosecutor, Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehei, said the opposition leaders could be accused of supporting people who defy God by protesting against the government last Sunday, when Shiite Muslims observed the sacred day of Ashoura. He said the leaders may face charges of "supporting apostates," or those who go against God. At least eight people died during the protests and hundreds were arrested. Ejehei's comments, published in state-owned Iran newspaper, deepened the bitter internal strife in Iran. Also Thursday, a group of government supporters, wearing white funeral shrouds to symbolize a willingness to die in defense of the clerical rulers, staged a rally in southern Tehran and gathered outside the offices of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, state radio reported.
Iranian security forces crushed rallies against the government after the summer but they have regained momentum recently. Officials said more than 500 protesters were arrested since Sunday's clashes and the number could be even higher. Many will likely be tried for apostasy - a crime punishable by death under Iranian law - as well as attempts to topple the government and fomenting the post-election turmoil. Iran has already sentenced five defendants to death in an ongoing mass trial of more than 100 opposition activists and figures. More than 80 were sentenced to prison from six months to 15 years. Ejehei said prosecution of the opposition leaders would not be forgotten. "The charge of supporting apostates and those who defied God will be added to their past charges," he said. Iran's deputy chief of judiciary, Ebrahim Raisi told the official IRNA news agency on Thursday that those detained over Sunday's unrest would be charged with violating public order and "Moharebe," which is Farsi for defying God. The Iranian police released Thursday on its Web site about 100 pictures of protesters involved in Sunday's rallies, asking the public to help identify and report them to the police because they were suspected of "damaging public property and insulting sanctities." The anarchists declare: Release the political prisoners in Iran! Do away with the fascist regime! Non-ochlarchical protests are not "Moharebe" and not against the Iranian constitution.
01.01.2010. Iran's main opposition spokesperson defiant after new threats. Iran's main opposition spokesperson on Friday pledged to remain defiant in the face of new threats - including calls by hard-liners for his execution - and said he was ready to sacrifice his life in defense of the people's right to protest peacefully against the government. Mir Hossein Mousavi's remarks come after the worst unrest since the immediate aftermath of the disputed June presidential election. As mentioned at least eight people died during anti-government protests on Sunday, including Mousavi's nephew. In one of his strongest statements to date, Mousavi said he was "ready for martyrdom" - the sacrifice of one's life for a higher cause - and lashed out at the bloody crackdown the authorities are waging against the opposition. He said the government was making more mistakes by resorting to violence and killings, and that it must accept the people's rights to hold peaceful demonstrations.
Iranian hard-liners have called for the execution of Mousavi and other opposition figures, while a previously unknown group claimed in an online posting that suicide squads were ready to assassinate opposition leaders should the judiciary fail to punish them within a week. Iran's state prosecutor on Thursday warned opposition leaders could be put on trial if they don't denounce this week's anti-government protests. "I explicitly and clearly state that an order to execute, murder and imprison (opposition leaders) ... won't resolve the problem," Mousavi said in a statement on his Web site, Kaleme. "I'm not afraid to be one of the martyrs people have offered in the struggle for their just demands." The confrontation between clerical rulers and their opponents returned to the streets in recent weeks, after a harsh crackdown immediately following the June 12 balloting all but crushed the opposition movement. One of those killed in clashes Sunday between security forces and opposition protesters was Mousavi's nephew, Ali Mousavi. He was gunned down but authorities claimed police didn't use firearms and said the nephew was "assassinated" by unknown assailants. The nephew was buried Wednesday in a hastily organized ceremony that was attended by the opposition leader and other family members. Authorities had taken the body from the hospital earlier in the week in what was seen as an attempt to prevent the funeral from turning into another pro-opposition protest.
Hard-liners have become especially furious after some pro-opposition protesters chanted slogans against Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei - a taboo in Iran, where the supreme leader is considered answerable only to god. Sunday's unrest was followed by two days of pro-government protests Wednesday and Thursday in which crowds called for Mousavi's execution and that of another opposition figure, Mahdi Karroubi. Some government supporters at the two days of rallies wore white funeral shrouds to symbolize a willingness to die in defense of Iran's clerical rulers. Several hundred turned out for demonstration Thursday in southern Tehran outside Khamenei's offices, state radio reported.
In his statement Friday, Mousavi also denounced hard-liners who he said preached violence from state-funded podiums in the name of Islam, a reference to cleric Ahmad Alamolhoda who called the Khamenei's opponents "cows and goats." "Encouraging the killing of people ... is a tragedy carried out by specific individuals and the state TV," Mousavi said, adding that efforts to silence the opposition "through arrests, violence and threats," would not succeed. Iran, Mousavi said, was in a "serious crisis" and killing protesters will only make the opposition movement stronger. He cited words of the founder of Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini: "Kill us, we will become stronger." The anarchists repeat: Non-ochlarchical protests are not "Moharebe" and not against the Iranian constitution.
04.01.2010. Tehran professors denounce violence on protesters. Nearly 90 professors at Tehran University have told Iran's supreme leader that ongoing violence against protesters shows the weakness of the country's leadership, a pro-reform Web site reported Monday, reflecting a growing willingness to risk careers and studies to challenge the ruling clerics. The current rumblings from universities highlight the evolution of the opposition movement. What began as raw and angry voter backlash after last June's disputed presidential election has moved to a possibly deeper and more ingrained fight against Iran's Islamic rulers. The letter signed by the 88 instructors was issued as university students around Iran staged acts of defiance - including hunger strikes and exam boycotts - to protest reported arrests and intimidation by hard-line forces, according to witnesses and reformist Web sites.
The government, meanwhile, stepped up its accusations that the West is fomenting Iran's postelection turmoil, saying that foreign nationals were among those arrested in the most recent clashes. Officials didn't provide the nationalities of those arrested, but accused the foreigners of leading a propaganda war and warned they face possible death sentences for seeking to topple the system. Authorities also have tightened pressures on universities. Opposition groups also claim faculty members and students who publicly back the demonstrations have been fired or blocked from coveted postgraduate slots in state-run schools. But the pressures haven't appeared to undercut the widening role of universities in the showdowns. The symbolism of campus resistance resonates strongly in Iran. College students were one of the pillars of the Islamic Revolution in 1979. In the late 1990s, students spearheaded the early cries for greater social and political freedoms.
The graying theocracy faces a critical generation gap and cannot afford to lose legitimacy among large portions of the youth in a country with nearly half its population under 25 years old, analysts say. "The universities are the little engines that make the big engine work," said Mehrzad Boroujerdi, an Iranian affairs expert at Syracuse University. "The students are the brains and the body of the opposition movement." The letter by the Tehran University professors - posted on the Greenroad Web site - called the attacks on opposition protesters a sign of weakness in the ruling system. It also urged Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to order arrests over the hard-line crackdown, which intensified after protesters began chanting slogans against the supreme leader.
There was no immediate reaction from Iran's leaders on the letter. But authorities have stepped up arrests after the latest wave of street protests by opposition groups in late December and have vowed an even more punishing response to any further protest rallies - which could next come in early February to coincide with the anniversaries of various events from the Islamic Revolution. "Nighttime attacks on defenseless student dormitories and daytime assaults on students at university campuses, venues of education and learning, is not a sign of strength. ... Nor is beating up students and their mass imprisonment," the letter read. The letter referred to attacks by pro-government paramilitary Basij forces on pro-opposition students inside Tehran University campus last month. "Unfortunately, all these (attacks) were carried out under the pretext of protecting Islam" and the position of the supreme leader, the letter said.
Tehran University is the country's largest, with 1,480 professors and teachers, according to its Web site. But smaller campuses also have become settings for stands by the opposition, according to reformist Web sites and witnesses. The witnesses spoke on condition of anonymity because of fear of arrest. At Razi University in the western city of Kermanshah, students posted a statement this week declaring they would not attend exams to protest arrests of classmates. In the eastern city of Mashhad, some students at Ferdowsi University began a hunger strike Sunday to demand the removal of security forces and hard-line vigilantes around the campus.
"The reform movement is strong and increasingly assertive," said Nicholas Burns, a professor at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and a former senior official at the State Department. "It now has a broader base within Iran that is no longer a struggle specifically over the stolen election." The government has accused the West of orchestrating Iran's worst internal unrest since the Islamic Revolution. Intelligence minister Heidar Moslehi said Monday some of those arrested in protests Dec. 27, when Shiite Muslims in Iran marked the sacred day of Ashoura, were foreign citizens. "Some of the detainees ... were foreign nationals who were leading a propaganda and a psychological war," said Moslehi, according to state TV. He said the foreigners came to Iran just two days before the Ashoura but did not specify their nationalities. Moslehi said cameras and equipment belonging to the foreigners was also confiscated. Probably false accusations. The arrested are probably innocent, the anarchists declare.
Iran has been conducting mass trials of opposition figures and activists arrested in the postelection protests. Five defendants have been sentenced to death and 81 had received prison terms ranging from six months up to 15 years. Authorities said more than 500 protesters were arrested after the Ashoura protests and that they would be put on trial. General prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi said those trials would be speedy and that some of the detainees could also face the death penalty over rioting against the ruling clerical establishment.
06.01.2010. Iran's parliament finds former prison head responsible for deaths in custody. A conservative Iranian Web site says a parliamentary probe has found a former Tehran prosecutor responsible for the death by torture of at least three anti-government protesters following the disputed June elections. Saeed Mortazavi was the Tehran city prosecutor who was responsible for monitoring Kahrizak prison, where at least three people were tortured to death. The Alef Web site, which reported the probe results, is close to conservative lawmaker Ahmad Tavakoli. After months of denials, Iran's judiciary acknowledged last month that the three detainees were beaten to death by their jailers. As mentioned the opposition says more than 80 protesters have been killed in the postelection crackdown, but the government puts the number of confirmed dead at less than 40.
08.01.2010. Iranian opposition leader car shot at. Armed pro-government demonstrators opened fire on the car of an Iranian opposition leader shattering its windows, his Web site reported on Friday. Sahamnews said the shooting happened late Thursday while former presidential candidate Mahdi Karroubi was leaving a building in Qazvin, some 90 miles (140 kilometers) west of Tehran. The report added that some 500 people had been demonstrating outside the building where he was staying since the day before. The site described the demonstrators as armed and said police were unable to disperse them. The shooting represents a rare armed attack on an opposition figure. In 1999, pro-reform politician Saeed Hajjarian was shot in the face, paralyzing him.The attack is an indication of the political turmoil rocking the country and possibly slipping out of control of the government.
Karroubi's car was earlier attacked by a mob wielding bricks in late December, just days after a harsh crackdown on opposition protests. Death threats against opposition leaders have been on the rise. In a pro-government demonstration in late December protesters called for Karroubi's execution and that of fellow opposition leader, Mir Hossein Mousavi. On Friday, the senior cleric Kazem Sedighi leading Friday prayers in the capital appeared to be giving a green light for people to take matters into their own hands against the opposition figures, if authorities didn't act. "I am concerned that people will lose patience if the legal apparatus does not conduct its affairs in a timely manner," he said, while admonishing that acts of extremism would be against the wishes of the supreme leader. Sedighi also claimed that some of the 500 protesters arrested around the Shiite holy day of Ashoura Dec. 27 were intoxicated.
11.01.2010. Iran prosecutor urges no leniency for detainees. Iran's top prosecutor has ordered his representative in Tehran not to show any leniency to detained opposition protesters, according to a statement posted Monday on a judicial Web site. "Strong action must be taken against seditionist elements," General prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi said in the statement, addressing Tehran chief prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi. The statement was referring to opposition protests last month.
Iranian opposition leader Mahdi Karroubi said a recent attack on his car would not force him to abandon his political activism, according to his Web site, Sahamnews. "I announce that the ever increasing threats ... have not only failed to weaken me, but also made me more firm," he said on his Web site. Pro-government demonstrators Friday opened fire on Karroubi's car, but he escaped unharmed. Karroubi blamed authorities for the incident, during which the gunfire appeared to come from the direction of a crowd of some 500 government supporters in Qazvin, a town some 90 miles (140 kilometers) west of Tehran. The semiofficial Fars news agency, which is close to hard-liners, said the local police chief, Masoud Jafari Nasab, denied that anyone fired on Karroubi's car
Karroubi said he and his children were ready to face any difficulty for the sake of their political convictions. Karroubi does not travel in Tehran or elsewhere without his two sons, Hossein and Taghi. Also on his site, Karroubi launched a scathing attack on authorities, saying they were responsible for allowing the 1979 Islamic revolution to "deviate" from its true path. The government, he said, responds with insults to any suggestion to resolve the political crisis that has arisen from the disputed June elections and the massive opposition protests that immediately followed. "It seems some officials are not only not interested in peace but also find their bread in the crisis, chaos and repression."
12.01.2010. Professor killed. A remote-controlled bomb has killed a Tehran University professor, according to Iranian state television. Named as Massoud Mohammadi, authorities say he was a high-ranking nuclear scientist. The 50-year old was a professor in neutron physics at the city's university. The academic was apparently killed by a booby-trapped motorbike near his home in the capital. Iranian media is blaming so-called "counter-revolutionary" elements. The Islamic Republic is also pointing the finger of blame at arch-foes the United States and Israel. Today, the country's Foreign Ministry said there were signs of Israeli and US involvement in the blast. His death comes as major international powers prepare to discuss possible new sanctions against Iran over its nuclear ambitions. There is confusion over Massoud Mahommadi's political leanings. Described by the state broadcaster as a supporter of the Iranian revolution, his name is said to have appeared on a list of academics backing opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi in June's presidential election. Universities have been the scene both of pro-reform and pro-government demonstrations since the disputed poll.
14.01.2010. This week's assassination of an Iranian scientist was carried out in a "Zionist style", President Mahmoud said on Thursday, in his first direct comment on the bombing attack in Tehran. Iranian officials and media have blamed both Israel, which Tehran calls "the Zionist regime", and the United States for Tuesday's killing of professor Massoud Ali-Mohammadi. Washington has dismissed the charge of US involvement as absurd."The depth of the enemies' grudge can be seen in the university professor's assassination," Ahmadinejad said, ISNA news agency reported. "The manner of bomb planting shows a Zionist style and they want to make sure that Iran would not advance," he said. When Massoud Mohammadi was buried in Tehran on Thursday, the crowd chanted "Death to America" and "Death to Israel", state television reported.
Iranian officials have described the professor as a nuclear scientist but a spokesman said he did not work for the Atomic Energy Organisation at the centre of the Islamic Republic's disputed nuclear programme. "They don't want to see thinkers and scientists in Iran and do not want to see its development," Ahmadinejad said, referring to Iran's foes, IRNA news agency reported. "The enemies cannot take away the concept of genius from Iran by killing geniuses." Ahmadinejad accused the West of seeking to dominate the Middle East, saying the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States were used as a pretext to gain dominance over the region.
A sister of Iran's Nobel Peace Prize Winner Shirin Ebadi, who was arrested after the Dec. 27 protests, was released on Thursday, according to the website of al Jazeera television.
15.01.2010. More repression of the opposition. Iran's police chief on Friday warned opposition supporters not to use cell phones and e-mail messages to organize protest rallies against the government, saying those who do so will be prosecuted and punished. Gen. Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam said spreading the word of the opposition through Internet or cell phone SMS is a crime that deserves severe punishment and that the authorities would continue monitoring those systems. The remarks are the latest reflecting the government's frustration at various imaginative ways the opposition has sought to rally supporters following the disputed June presidential election. A harsh government crackdown has left the opposition with little means to make its voice heard. Almost all pro-reform newspapers have been closed since the June 12 vote in which President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner. Those still in circulation have been openly threatened against publishing opposition statements. Iranian state media, controlled by hard-liners, regularly ignore the opposition. Pro-reform Web sites are also blocked, making it difficult for statements, such as those of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, to be seen by the wider public.
However, Iran's tech-savvy and mostly young opposition activists have turned to cell phone SMS and e-mails as a potent weapon in organizing anti-government rallies. In response, cell phone service is regularly blocked during opposition demonstrations - but often, not before the message gets out. "These people must know when they send the SMS messages or e-mails out, these systems are completely under (our) control," Moghaddam was quoted as saying by the semiofficial ISNA news agency. "These individuals should not assume ... they can hide their identities. That is a wishful thinking." Moghaddam added that those who continue to use cell phones and e-mails in service of the opposition would be punished. "Those involved in organizing or issuing appeals have committed a worse crime than those who take to the streets," he said.
In the past, Moghaddam has warned opposition supporters to stay off the streets or face harsh consequences, saying the "era of tolerance is over. Anyone attending such rallies will be crushed." The SMS and e-mailing appear to be part of wider back-to-basic tactics used by the opposition, such as pamphlets and graffiti. Other tactics include scribbling pro-opposition statement on banknotes, mostly in the signature green color of the opposition movement. This has riled authorities and the central bank has scrambled to pull the notes out of circulation.
18.01.2010. The opposition calls for new demonstrations 11.02.2010. Iranian opposition groups flooded the Web on Monday with calls for a massive show of force during next month's anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, openly taunting authorities who have warned of a punishing response to any disruptions of the most hallowed day in the Iranian political calendar. The blitz of messages and videos on opposition sites and social networking forums highlighted the continued ability of anti-government forces to harness the Internet despite attempts by Iranian officials to cripple their Web outreach. It also suggested that the Feb. 11 commemorations could become a replay of the street battles that have marked other major political and religions dates in past months that anti-government protesters have used to challenge the ruling system. The barrage of opposition Web postings picked up steam Monday with some drawing parallels between the current showdowns against Iran's Islamic leaders and the 1979 groundswell that toppled the Western-backed monarchy.
One video featured patriotic music with scenes from 1979 and the demonstrations that began with claims of vote-rigging in last June's presidential election. "Countrymen, rise up," read one message by the opposition blog Balatarin.com. "Victory is near." The blog included a calendar marking the dates of the large opposition marches since June and pointing ahead to plans for upcoming protests - the next being timed to coincide the government's Feb. 11 events that culminate with a huge political gathering in Tehran's Azadi Square. Iranian authorities have warned opposition groups that security forces would crush any protests on the anniversary, claiming riot police and hard-line militias have shown restraint so far despite using clubs, tear gas and gunfire.
On Monday, Iran put five people on trial over their alleged roles in anti-government protests on Dec. 27 - a significant day of Shiite religious events - that sparked the worst street violence in months, state television reported. If found guilty, they could face the death penalty. The five, who were not identified, have been accused of cooperating with the People's Mujahedeen, an armed [marxist] opposition group, the report said. The broadcast showed the defendants in a courtroom but their faces were not visible. A prosecutor read out a lengthy indictment against the five, accusing them of a serious crime against Islam and the state known as "moharebeh," or defying God, which is punishable by death. More than 100 opposition figures were brought before judges starting in August in what critics have said was a show trial with coerced confessions. Prosecutors accuse them of seeking to topple the country's ruling Islamic system. The court has so far sentenced five people to death and handed down more than 80 prison sentences ranging from six months to 15 years.
After the December clashes, police chief Gen. Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam warned opposition protesters to stay off the streets or face harsh consequences. "In dealing with previous protests, police showed leniency. But given that these opponents are seeking to topple (the ruling system), there will be no mercy," Moghaddam said, according to the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency. "We will take severe action. The era of tolerance is over. Anyone attending such rallies will be crushed." In a statement posted last week on a judicial Web site, Iran's top prosecutor ordered his representative in Tehran to seek the harshest measures against opposition protesters detained in the Dec. 27 unrest. "Strong action must be taken against seditionist elements," General Prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi said in the statement, addressing Tehran chief prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi. But opposition appeared undaunted.
Web posts urged government opponents to expand their campaign of graffiti and writing slogans on money. Dozens of messages called for protesters to pour onto the streets on Feb. 11 - which marks the day the last security forces of the shah collapsed. "Unite, fight, victory," said one blog. Another proclaimed: "I will get my country back." The blog IlovemyIran.wordpress.com made suggestions for slogans to chant at the next rally. They included: "Our nation is awake." Also Monday, Iran vowed to take revenge on Israel and the United States for the slaying last week of a physics professor in a mysterious bomb attack, the official news agency IRNA reported. Iranian officials have blamed an exiled opposition group known as the People's Mujahedeen [marxists], accusing it of acting on behalf of Israel and the US The armed opposition group and Washington have denied involvement, while Israel has not commented.
It remains unclear why the 50-year-old Tehran University professor, Masoud Ali Mohammadi, would have been a target for assassins who left a bomb-rigged motorcycle outside his home on Jan. 12. Ali Mohammadi had no prominent political voice, no published work with military relevance and no declared links to Iran's nuclear program, though his work included some aspects of nuclear theory. "Rest assured that Iran will take revenge for the blood of martyr Ali Mohammadi from you," Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said, addressing Israel and the United States.
28.01.2010. Iran has reportedly executed two men convicted of being "enemies of god", stoking fears of a further crackdown on opposition protests. A student news agency reports that the executed pair were found guilty of waging war against god, trying to overthrow the Islamic establishment and membership of a banned monarchist opposition group. They were hanged at dawn. The same agency says the death sentences for nine other detainees relate to the post-election unrest and are at the appeal stage. One of the men hanged was arrested months before the election, says a lawyer close to the case.
30.01.2010. Iran puts 16 opposition supporters on trial. Iran put 16 opposition supporters detained during anti-government protests last month on trial Saturday on charges of rioting and conspiring against the ruling system, Iran's state media reported. The defendants face charges ranging from plotting against the establishment to violating security regulations, said the official IRNA news agency. Five of those on trial, including two women, were accused of "moharebeh," or defying god, a charge that could carry the death penalty, the semiofficial ISNA news agency reported. The new prosecutions, coupled with the execution on Thursday of two men accused of involvement in anti-government groups, could mark an attempt by Iran's hard-line leaders to intimidate the opposition before a new round of street demonstrations expected in February.
Those who stood trial Saturday - including a follower of the Baha'i faith, an alleged communist and a student activist - were detained during anti-government demonstrations on Dec. 27. As mentioned at least eight people were killed and hundreds more were arrested in those rallies, during which opposition activists and security forces clashed. The violence was the worst since authorities launched a harsh crackdown immediately after Iran's disputed presidential election in June. The protesters have presented Iran's cleric-led establishment with its biggest challenge since the 1979 revolution despite a brutal crackdown that has left hundreds imprisoned. IRNA quoted a prosecutor identified only by the last name of Farahani as saying in court that some of the defendants had confessed to spying, planning bomb attacks and damaging public and private property. He also said some of the defendants had sent videos of the clashes between protesters and Iranian police to "foreign hostile networks," IRNA reported.
Human rights groups have cautioned that such confessions are often made under duress in Iran. The ISNA news agency quoted the student activist on trial, who was not named, as telling the court Saturday that he had given interviews to the foreign media about the protests since the "doors of the domestic media are closed to us." Iranian authorities have banned many newspapers and news Web sites and detained many opposition journalists after the election. The new trial comes amid a sweeping crackdown by Iran's clerical leaders against opposition activists in a bid to crush the challenge that has emerged to their rule in the wake of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's disputed re-election in June. The opposition as mentioned says Ahmadinejad's victory was fraudulent. Iran's hard-line government has quashed opposition rallies and tried more than 100 political activists in a mass trial that started in August, sentencing 11 people to death and more than 80 people to prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years.
On Thursday, as mentioned authorities hanged two men who had been convicted of belonging to "counterrevolutionary and monarchist groups," plotting to overthrow "the Islamic establishment" and planning assassinations and bombings. The men were arrested months before the election. But they were brought before judges in the same mass trial that started in August in an attempt by the leadership to falsely indicate that the political opposition is in league with violent armed groups in a foreign-backed plot to overthrow the Islamic system. Iran's main opposition leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi, denounced the executions and said they were likely meant to scare people into staying away from the planned Feb. 11 demonstrations, according to the pro-reform Web site Sahamnews.
After meeting Saturday, the two opposition leaders - both of whom ran against Ahmadinejad in June - urged people to turn out for next month's rallies. The planned demonstrations are meant to coincide with anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution. A display of opposition numbers on the most hallowed day in the Iranian political calendar would mark a stinging symbolic challenge to the clerical leadership. Authorities have vowed a punishing response. The anarchists urge the people, seen as a class in contrast to the superiors in rank and/or income, to turn out and demonstrate Feb. 11, and protest with dignity, not ochlarchy.
10.02.2010. Iran obstructing links to outside world, opposition members say. Iranian authorities have imposed a virtual information blockade after opposition leaders issued a call for supporters to take to the streets during an important government anniversary on Thursday, people inside the country are saying. Residents of the Iranian capital said Wednesday that text messages on many messaging services have been blocked and Internet speeds have slowed to a crawl. The Internet "comes on only a few minutes each day, but you never know when," one Iranian wrote in an e-mail to CNN, which he said took seven hours to send. "This has been going on for more than four days now. I contacted my Internet provider and they said it is out of their control." More ominously, human rights groups and opposition Web sites have reported widespread arrests targeting journalists. According to the Paris-based journalism watchdog Reporters Without Borders, at least eight journalists were arrested Sunday and Monday, bringing the total number of reporters now in prison to at least 65.
"They have arrested everybody," said Nooshabeh Amiri, a journalist who fled Iran five years ago and now writes for the Persian Web site Rooz online from exile in Paris. Amiri said some of her former colleagues are trying to flee Iran. "Just this morning I helped somebody leave through Iraq," she said. Meanwhile, Iranian security officers have put out a steady drumbeat of warnings, announcing they will not tolerate opposition protesters during state-sponsored celebrations Thursday, the 31st anniversary of the foundation of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
"People's massive participation in 22 Bahman (February 11) rallies will thwart the plots hatched by the enemies to disturb the national ceremony, and enemies will have no opportunity for maneuvering and presenting themselves," Police Chief Brig. Gen. Ahmadi Moqaddam said, according to the state-backed Fars News Agency. As mentioned on January 28, authorities executed two opposition activists after convicting them of being "mohareb," or so called "enemies of God". On Tuesday, a court sentenced another activist to death. At least 10 opposition members now await execution. "Our phones are strictly followed and controlled," said one young Iranian who participated in past protests, during a phone conversation from Tehran. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the Iranian said that for the first time the satellite television signals in his neighborhood had been jammed. The anarchists once more urge the people, seen as a class in contrast to the superiors in rank and/or income, to turn out and demonstrate Thursday Feb. 11, and protest with dignity, not ochlarchy.
11.02.2010. Opposition protesters: 'Death to the dictator -Death to Khamenei'. - Clashes and arrests. Iran briefly arrests Khomeini's granddaughter. An Iranian Web site says authorities briefly arrested and then released the granddaughter of the architect of the Islamic revolution, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and her husband. The report by the pro-reform Rahesabz Web site couldn't be independently confirmed, but the site has been credible in the past. It says Zahra Eshraghi and her husband Mohammad Reza Khatami, the brother of a former president, were in custody Thursday for an hour. There were no further details. It would rank among the most high-profile detentions by authorities, who have waged a massive crackdown before events Thursday marking the 1979 Islamic Revolution, which was led by Eshraghi's grandfather. Low-level clashes are reported around Tehran, including an attack on the car of opposition leader Mahdi Karroubi.
More attacks and clashes were reported in Iran's capital at noon Thursday as thousands of pro- and anti-government demonstrators took to the streets of Tehran to mark a key national anniversary. Pro-government supporters filled Azadi, or Freedom, Square in central Tehran to hear President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speak on the 31st anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, which toppled a Western-backed monarch and transformed Iran into an Islamic republic. In a speech that lasted more than an hour, Ahmadinejad confirmed that his country had now enriched uranium to 20 percent -- sufficient, scientists say, to create a nuclear reaction. He added that Iran is capable of enriching uranium up to 80 percent but won't. Ahmadinejad also touched on familiar topics: He lashed out at the West, particularly the United States, and criticized its relationship with Iran's rival, Israel. The crowd watching his speech cheered. Many waved flags. Others carried placards bearing the images of the heroes of the Islamic Revolution.
Meanwhile, fascist security forces, in uniform and in plainclothes, prevented the opposition -- the so-called Green Movement and others -- from reaching the square by firing on crowds in some areas and pepper-spraying demonstrators in others, opposition groups said. At Aria-Shahr square in western Tehran and in various parts of the city, security forces fired on and tear-gassed demonstrators who chanted "Death to the dictator," and "Death to [supreme leader, the arch-enemy of the people, Ayatollah] Khamenei." Undeterred, the demonstrators chanted on. Many of them wore masks or handkerchiefs over their faces.
Iranian authorities had warned that they would arrest and detain demonstrators until April if they take to the streets. The precautions were meant to prevent a repeat of overt anti-government displays on other key occasions that have embarrassed and inflamed Iranian authorities. Earlier in the day, pickups roamed the streets of Tehran, blaring pro-government slogans and songs from speakers, a witness said. As mentioned, since the disputed presidential election in June, anti-government protesters have turned public gatherings into rallies against hard-liner Ahmadinejad. Police have responded to such demonstrations with mass arrests, denouncing protesters as anti-Islamic and against the revolution.
Later hundreds of thousands of pro-government Iranians are rallying to mark the 31st anniversary of the nation's revolution. The opposition reports a security presence in Tehran perhaps unprecedented in recent years, with roads blocked, and layers of the fascist police and members of the fascist Basij militia, all designed to prevent them gathering or getting near the official demonstration. Those who have made it to central Tehran have been confronted with riot police, tear gas, possibly even gunfire. It indicates that the authorities are still deeply nervous about their support, and the government could still be vulnerable if there are new problems with the economy, or if they attempt to round up the spokespersons of the opposition. The state-backed rally dwarfed anti-government gatherings, which were far smaller than other outpourings of dissent in recent months. Still, the day's events showed that authorities must rely on full-scale pressures to keep a lid on demonstrations, and any breathing room may be limited. Opposition supporters are certain to regroup and look for weak spots in the ruling system. The battle for the future of Iran continues, the anarchists say.
12.02.2010. Iran's supreme leader, the arch-enemy of the people, seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank/and or income, praised the mass turnout at the government-backed rally marking the 1979 Islamic Revolution and warned the West to stop putting obstacles in his country's path, state Press TV reported Friday. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei thanked the so called "tens of millions" across the country who celebrated Thursday's anniversary, saying the turnout at rallies reflected the "nation's strength". Khamenei said Thursday's rally should be a wake-up call for the "domestic enemies and deceived groups who claim to represent the people." He blasted the West, saying it was time for "foreign enemies to abandon futile efforts to subjugate" Iran. "The past 31 years are not enough to awaken a few arrogant and bullying states to their futile efforts to dominate this Islamic nation," said Khamenei, who has final say on all state matters.
The authorities had worried ahead of the anniversary that any significant protests or clashes would be seen as a major embarrassment on a day intended to showcase national achievements and fascist "unity". An array of riot police, undercover security agents and hard-line ultra-fascist militiamen - some on motorcycles - had fanned out across Tehran on Thursday in what appeared to be the largest deployment since the post-election mayhem. Hard-liners and security forces prevented opposition spokesperson Mir Hossein Mousavi and his wife, Zahra Rahnavard, from attending an opposition gathering. Hard-liners attacked the car of another opposition spokesperson, Mahdi Karroubi, and smashed its windows. Karroubi's son Taghi said his brother Ali, 36, was detained by security forces on Thursday and "severely beaten ... almost to death." Speaking Friday on the phone to a reporter outside Iran, Taghi Karroubi said his brother was later released and the family took him to a hospital. His condition was serious and he suffered from internal bleeding and a broken army, the brother said.
However, Thursday's clashes were significantly less violent than previous opposition protest in late December, when eight people died and hundreds were arrested. Authorities as mentioned also jammed the Internet and mobile phones to disrupt the opposition. In Tehran, Internet speeds dropped dramatically and e-mail services such as Gmail were widely blocked. Three major international broadcasters condemned Iran over its "deliberate electronic interference" in their broadcasts. The BBC, Deutsche Welle and Voice of America said in a joint statement the jamming began Thursday. They said Iran was broadcasting freely around the world while denying its own people programs coming from the outside. Iran's fascist "elite" Revolutionary Guard, which was in charge of security for the rally, issued a statement Friday echoing Khamenei's words and saying the anniversary showed the "will of the nation" could not be defeated and is "strong as steel."
The government has regularly accused the US and Britain of fomenting Iran's unrest. It has as mentioned put more than 100 opposition activists and figures on trial since August on charges of fomenting the postelection turmoil. Ten have been sentenced to death and dozens to prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years. In a nationally televised address from the anniversary gathering, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad defied the West and boasted that Iran has become a "nuclear state." He dismissed new US sanctions and denigrated President Barack Obama's efforts to repair relations. Ahmadinejad said Iran has produced the first batch of 20 percent enriched uranium - sufficient strength to power Iran's research reactor - though he did not say how much uranium had been enriched. Such a process has been at the heart of a UN-drafted proposal to provide Iran with reactor-ready fuel in exchange for its stockpile of low-enriched uranium. Iran has repeatedly blocked the plan with conditions and caveats. The announcement of the higher-enriched uranium adds to anarchists' and Western countries' worries that Iran has long-term goals to develop nuclear arms - even though it is still below the 90 percent-plus level needed for a weapon. Iran denies the accusation and insists it only seeks to produce energy and medical isotopes.
The anarchists in general support the opposition, and the people seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank and/or income, against the horror-rule of the arch-enemy of the people Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and call for more protests, protests with dignity, not ochlarchy...
The Anarchist International demands freedom of expression in Iran and condemns the arch-enemy of the people Ali Khamenei's obstruction of links to the outside world, Internet and jamming of TV-signals.
Iran opposition reassess options after crackdown. Iran's opposition protesters were reeling Friday a day after a ferocious security clampdown foiled their attempt to hold mass demonstrations, describing how government militiamen seemed to be everywhere on Tehran's streets, swooping in to break up their gatherings. Some in the movement are reassessing their strategy, considering moving away from street protests in the face of the crackdown. But they are struggling to find an alternative way to harness anger at Iran's government. "I don't think we always have to pour into the streets to demand our rights," said Mohammad Taqi Karroubi, son of a senior opposition spokesperson, Mahdi Karroubi. Given the fierceness of the crackdown, "it's natural that we don't want people to pay a high price anymore."
The opposition and the Anarchist International had called for mass protests to coincide with government-run celebrations Thursday for he 31st anniversary of the Islamic revolution that created Iran's clerical rule. But as mentioned an array of riot police, undercover security agents and hard-line militiamen - some on motorcycles - had fanned out across Tehran in one of the largest deployments since Iran's political turmoil began following June's disputed presidential elections. Protesters were unable to muster a significant presence. Several young opposition supporters who participated in Thursday's scattered protests expressed dismay, speaking of a temporary defeat and saying the movement needed to strengthen and deepen its organization. Some criticized its loose leadership, but not the libertarian opposition. "If we had a strong charismatic leader we wouldn't have marched in the streets dazed and confused yesterday," one female university student said in Tehran. "I see the opposite side as the winner today. A temporary winner. ...We don't have a central command. We were like a broken chain, thrown all over."
Another protester said, "We need a movement that will grow roots. Demonstrations are not going to take us anywhere. We need to make people aware, educate them culturally and socially." They and other protesters spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation by authorities, who have jailed protesters and handed them heavy prison sentences for talking to foreign media. The Green Movement, as some of the opposition calls itself, is made up of a number of pro-reform groups and parties, which overall seek political change in Iran and say that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won the June 12 election by fraud. But they have differences over how deep reforms should go.
The Green Movement has united behind Mir Hossein Mousavi, who they say is the rightful winner of the presidential vote. But while popular among reformists, Mousavi is often seen as a lackluster and low-key politician. Mousavi and other Green Movement spokespersons say they want changes within Iran's Islamic system, though some in the movement oppose clerical rule completely. Iran's clerical leadership was declaring victory after the anniversary, which saw hundreds of thousands at the official ceremonies. Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the arch-enemy of the people, as mentioned stated Thursday's rally should be a wake-up call for the "domestic enemies and deceived groups who claim to represent the people."
The crackdown has intensified since demonstrations in late December, which were the bloodiest in months, as mentioned with at least eight people killed in clashes between protesters and police. Since then, two people have been executed, and death sentences have been announced against 10 other protesters. Mohsen Sazegara, a founder of the Revolutionary Guards at the outset of the 1979 revolution who has since turned against the regime and fled abroad, said the opposition has to find alternative ways to confront the leadership. "Street protests should not be the sole tactic. Others are needed that can paralyze the regime and make the government ungovernable," said Sazegara who is based in the US
But the question is how. Widespread strikes - including at the state electricity and oil companies, radio and television stations, the Bazaar and most of the country's factories - were one tactic used in the 1979 revolution. But it's not clear if the present opposition can rally enough support among Iran's laborers. Publicly, leaders and organizers of the opposition inside and outside Iran are trying to put on a brave face. "It is natural that the Green Movement will be silent for two or three days in order to take a critical look at itself so it can launch a more serious course," said Mohammad Javad Akberein, an editor at the opposition Rahesabz Web site in Paris.
Mohammad Taqi Karroubi said Thursday's events showed that despite the intimidation - including the death sentences - "people, young and old bravely came into the streets. But the other side outnumbered them." The female university student said she headed to join Thursday's protest carrying a poster of Khamenei, hoping to get through security by passing as a government supporter long enough to join other demonstrators. She complained of a lack of coordination, pointing to how Karroubi supporters gathered in one location, Mousavi's in another, making them easier to disperse. And once they tried to start protests, security forces quickly descended on them.
"For every one of us, there were at least two security men: plainclothes, intelligence, Revolutionary Guards, anti-riot police, masked men and motorcyclists driving right among people, savagely revving their engines and shouting, 'Haydar, Haydar,'" - a reference to the Shiite saint Ali - she said. They were "spraying tear gas or firing paint-filled balls at people so they could be identified. They all had big smiles on their faces, huge smiles of victory," she said. She said she saw one young man, about 17 years old, being beaten by security agents, who "put his head on the curb of a gutter and threatened to knock it off. ... Protesters managed to rescue him." "The lump in my throat is choking me. We had so much hope for this day which unfortunately was ruined," she said. Still, she said, she will participate in what could be the next attempt at protests, in March to coincide with Chahar Shanbeh Soori, a traditional fire festival ahead of Iranian New Year celebrations.
Another protester, a 19-year-old student, said many fear the crackdown will get even harsher. He predicted that political pressure will increase, executions will continue and the climate will become even more "militaristic." But, he said, he and his friends will "remain reformists until the end of our lives."
18.02.2010. Iran may be working on secretly developing a nuclear warhead for a missile, IAEA draft report says. The IAEA is the world´s center of cooperation in the nuclear field. It was set up as the world´s "Atoms for Peace" organization in 1957 within the United Nations family. The Agency works with its member countries and multiple partners worldwide to promote safe, secure and peaceful nuclear technologies. The Anarchist International demands full stop in the very likely Iranian attempts of development of nuclear warheads.
19.02.2010. Iran's supreme leader: We do not seek atomic bombs. Iran's supreme leader said Friday the Islamic republic isn't seeking and doesn't believe in pursuing nuclear bombs. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei made the remarks a day after a draft report from the UN nuclear watchdog said Iran may be working secretly to develop a nuclear warhead for a missile. "Iran will not get emotional in its response to these nonsensical statements, because we have often said that our religious tenets and beliefs consider these kinds of weapons of mass destruction to be symbols of genocide and are, therefore, forbidden and considered to be haram (religiously banned)," he said. "This is why we do not believe in atomic bombs and weapons and do not seek them." The ayatollah's remarks reflect the tensions between the anarchists and several countries, mainly in the West - and Iran - over its nuclear program. It is a fear that Iran aims to develop the capacity to build a nuclear bomb. Iran denies this, saying its nuclear program is designed solely to produce civilian energy and for medical use.
The document ny IAEA is the first draft report by the International Atomic Energy Agency's director general, Yukiya Amano, who replaced Mohamed ElBaradei late last year. It has not been approved by its board of governors, but the agency has expressed concerns over the years about Iran's nuclear activities. The draft report lists ways in which the Islamic state is allegedly defying UN orders about its nuclear program. It said Iran had begun enriching uranium to a level that can sustain a nuclear reaction before IAEA inspectors arrived to monitor the process, and in defiance of a request not to do so.The draft report is the first produced by the IAEA since the recent discovery of a secret nuclear facility at Qom.
There is no explanation for that facility that is consistent with the needs of a civilian nuclear program. And it characterizes the way in which Iran has conducted its relations with the IAEA and its failure to satisfactorily explain what its activities and ambitions are in the nuclear sphere. The draft report highlighted concerns about rising tensions in the Middle East, particularly between Iran and Israel. Israel has often been the object of rhetoric by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has said the Jewish state "must be wiped off the map" politically. "As the supreme leader Ali Khamenei, the arch-enemy of the people, seen as a class in contrast to the superiors in rank and/or income, and his right fascist regime, have told several lies or very likely lies, se above, it is no reason to trust him in this case," the anarchists declare.
22.02.2010. Iran to build enrichment sites inside mountains. Iran said Monday it plans to build two new uranium enrichment facilities deep inside mountains to protect them from attack, a new challenge to the anarchists and mainly Western powers trying to curb Tehran's nuclear program for fear it is aimed at making weapons. Ali Akbar Salehi, who is also Iran's vice president, said Tehran intends to use its more advanced centrifuges at the new sites, a decision that could add to growing concerns among anarchists and in the West over Tehran's program because the technology would allow Iran to accelerate the pace of its program. The two plants are among 10 industrial scale uranium enrichment facilities Iran approved the construction of in November, a dramatic expansion of the program in defiance of UN and anarchists' demands it halt enrichment.
"Hopefully, we may begin construction of two new enrichment sites in the next Iranian year as ordered by the president," the semiofficial ISNA quoted Salehi as saying Monday. The Iranian calendar year begins March 21. "As of now, our enrichment sites ... will be built inside mountains," Salehi added, according to ISNA. The decision appears to be aimed at shielding the facilities from potential armed attack. Israel considers Iran's nuclear program a strategic threat, and has hinted at the possibility of airstrikes in self defense against Iran, if world pressure does not halt Tehran's nuclear efforts. The Israelis have launched such strikes in the past. In 1981, an Israeli air attack destroyed an unfinished nuclear reactor in Iraq. Israel also hit a suspected nuclear facility in Syria in September 2007.
Iran's enrichment of uranium is a central concern of the anarchists, the Anarchies of Norway, Switzerland and Iceland, and USA and other nations negotiating with the country over its disputed nuclear program. The technology can be used to generate fuel for power plants and isotopes for medical purposes, but it can also be used to make weapons-grade uranium for atomic bombs. Tehran says as mentioned its enrichment work is only meant for peaceful purposes, but anarchists and USA and its allies worry the program masks efforts to build a nuclear weapon.
Tehran has already said it may install its more advanced centrifuges at its small enrichment site near the holy city of Qom, which was made public last September. The new centrifuges are more advanced than the decades-old P-1 type centrifuges in use at the country's main enrichment facility at Natanz, in central Iran. Centrifuges are machines used to enrich uranium - a technology that can produce fuel for power plants or materials for a nuclear weapon. Uranium enriched to a low level is used to produce fuel, but further enrichment makes it suitable for use in building nuclear arms.
The new models will be able to enrich uranium much faster than the old ones - which means Iran could amass more material in a shorter space of time that could be turned into the fissile core of missiles, should Tehran choose to do so. Salehi said the new enrichment sites will be equal to that of Natanz in terms of production capacity but smaller in geographical size, another indication that more advanced centrifuges will be installed, requiring less space to churn out the same enriched uranium. More than 8,600 centrifuges have been set up in Natanz, but only about 3,800 are actively enriching uranium, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA. The facility will eventually house 54,000 centrifuges. Tehran produced its first batch of uranium enriched to a higher level earlier this month, prompting the anarchists to call for - and USA and its allies to seek - new UN Security Council sanctions.
27.02.2010. Iranian opposition spokesperson - in strongest criticism yet - says dictatorial "cult" ruling Iran. An opposition spokesperson said Saturday that a dictatorial "cult" was ruling Iran in the name of Islam - his strongest attack to date on the country's clerical hierarchs. Mir Hossein Mousavi also challenged the government to let his supporters take to the streets freely, saying that would allow it to gauge the opposition's true strength. On Thursday, Iran's supreme leader, the arch-enemy of the people, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, charged that the country's opposition had lost its credibility and its right to participate in politics by not accepting the results of June presidential elections. Khamenei's comments suggest that Iran's opposition will be barred from running in any future elections.
"This is the rule of a cult that has hijacked the concept of Iranianism and nationalism," Mousavi said in an interview published on his Web site, kaleme.com. "Our people clearly understand the difference between divine piety and thirst for power in a religious style ... our people can't tolerate that (dictatorial) behaviors are promoted in the name of religion." He said the opposition aims to effect reform by raising the consciousness of the Iranian people. "Spreading awareness is the movement's main strategy," he said. Iran's opposition alleges President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won the June vote through fraud and that Mousavi was the rightful winner. A massive wave of protests as mentioned provoked a bloody government crackdown, during which more than 80 demonstrators were killed and hundreds of rights activists, journalists and pro-reform politicians were arrested.
The government, which puts the number of confirmed deaths at 30, has accused opposition leaders of being "stooges of the West" and of seeking to topple the ruling system through street protests. Meanwhile, the country's hardline rulers have put more than 100 people on a mass trial that began in August. Eleven people have been sentenced to death, and more than 80 others have received prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years. Iran's rulers point to several recent pro-goverment rallies as an indication that the opposition has lost popular backing. But Mousavi rejected that claim, and accused the state of busing people in to Tehran to inflate the crowds at Feb. 11 celebrations marking the anniversary of Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution.
"It was an engineered rally ... the biggest number of buses and trains were employed for this rally," he said. He added that there is "no pride" in holding such a rally, and charged that resorting to such tricks is similar to "a dictatorial mentality and methods employed before the revolution." However, Mousavi acknowledged that the government's bloody crackdown has made it impossible for the opposition to publicly engage in political activities. He urged the clerical leaders to let opposition supporters take to the streets without being attacked by security forces, saying "how people respond will put an end to all speculation" about the opposition's strength. Mousavi also warned that shutting down newspapers and blocking Web sites won't help the ruling system silence opposition voices, and asked that his newspaper be allowed to reopen.
Iran's hardline government has closed down dozens of pro-reform papers, including Mousavi's Kalame Sabz, or Green Word, and blocked hundreds of reformist Web sites as part of its efforts to clamp down on opposition activities. Despite the government's efforts to control the opposition, Mousavi said repression won't stop people from demanding change. "Tens of millions of Iranians who face censorship, obstruction of their freedoms and repressive measures ... and the spread of corruption and lies, want changes," Mousavi said. "Repressive measures will distance us from a logical solution."
01.03.2010. Reformist papers banned in Iran. The authorities in Iran have closed down the country's biggest-circulation reformist newspaper, Etemaad, accusing it of breaching media laws. They also suspended publication of a weekly reformist paper whose managing director is the son of one of Iran's opposition leaders, Mehdi Karroubi. Hossein Karroubi said that the paper, Iran Dokht, was targeted due to his father's political activities. Last week Mehdi Karroubi was beaten up by Iranian security forces at a rally. Both he and the other main opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi were taking part in a rally on 11 February, marking the anniversary of the Islamic revolution, when they were reportedly attacked by the government's Basij militia.
Attack on offices. In an interview with BBC Persian television, Hossein Karroubi said that a few days ago, an Iranian government official had spoken to his mother, the proprietor of Iran Dokht. The official had criticized the political stance of the opposition leader. Hossein Karroubi said that three months ago there had been an attack on the offices of the journal and the attackers had taken "five or six" computer drives with them. Publication of the newspaper Etemaad was suspended by Iran's Media Supervision Board, which says it was responsible for repeated press offences.
Observers say that on Monday it published a story on the reaction to the emergence of a film showing the police attack on Tehran university last June, just three days after the election. Press watchdog official Mohammad Ali Ramin told state-run television later that the ban "was a bitter decision for us but it was done due to repeated breaking of the law," news agency AFP reported. "The decision was taken with a degree of leniency... Its licence was not revoked and its case was referred to the judiciary," Mr Ramin, who is also the deputy culture minister for media affairs, was quoted as saying. A third publication, Sina, a weekly provincial newspaper, was also banned, accused of not operating in line with the constitution.
19.05.2010. The Anarchist International, The Anarchist International Embassy, and the Anarchy of Norway condemn Iranian executions. The Norwegian cabinet, AI and AIE have condemned the killings of five Kurdish activists in an Iranian prison last week. Evin prison in the capital city, Tehran put the men to death shortly before the auspicious anniversary of the 2009 elections. "Norway condemns the execution of the five Kurdish activists in Iran last Sunday morning," said a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Gry Larsen in a statement. The killings have been deemed a violation of both international and national principles of the rule of law to which Iran has committed itself. The circumstances involved extensive use of torture and long isolation periods followed by summary trials and illegal corporal punishment, reports the National Council of Resistance of Iran.
The executions came after several other Iranian nationals were handed death sentences for their alleged role in the demonstrations which mired last year's Iranian elections. The Anarchy of Norway, AI and AIE have denounced the fact that many of these orders were undertaken at mass trials without the appropriate legal assistance for the accused or sufficient evidence. The prisoners were falsely condemned for either being a) opposed to the ruling regime [which is no crime], b) 'enemies of God', or for c) 'cooperating with enemies of the country'. "The trial proceedings have been unfair with a lack of proper evidence and only vague references to the exact charges. This increases the unpredictability and fear felt by the people of the country. The executions on Sunday, just before the anniversary of the disputed presidential election, also raise concerns about the situation of other activists in prison," said Ms Larsen. AI, AIE and the Anarchy of Norway have joined with the EU to condemn the executions, with Bjørn T. Grydeland, another spokesperson for the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, also voicing his disapproval during a recent meeting with the forthcoming Iranian Ambassador.
09.06.2010. New UN sanctions against Iran. The UN Security Council has approved a fourth round of sanctions against Iran over its nuclear programme. There were 12 votes in favour of the resolution. Turkey and Brazil voted against it. Lebanon abstained. US President Barack Obama said the sanctions sent an "unmistakable message" to Iran. Its government had, for years, he declared failed to live up to its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. "Iran is the only NPT signatory in the world, the only one, that cannot convince the IAEA that its nuclear programme is intended for peaceful purposes," he said, speaking at the White House. "That is why the international community was compelled to impose these serious consequences. These are the most comprehensive sanctions that the Iranian government has faced."
USA calls the latest UN sanctions on Iran a diplomatic victory, a show of unity by the world's big powers and a powerful way to prevent the country from making nuclear weapons. Iran says the sanctions are an unfair attempt to keep it from developing a peaceful civilian energy program. Whatever Iran's ultimate goal, it is clear that, like three previous sets of sanctions, the new measures are unlikely to crimp a nearly mature nuclear program that can be turned to both peaceful purposes and making atomic weapons. The new sanctions authorize countries to inspect cargo to and from Iran; strengthen an arms embargo by banning transfers of more types of conventional arms and missiles; expand restrictions on Iran's access to nuclear technology; add more institutions to a financial sanctions watch list and urge "vigilance" in doing business with any organization linked to Iran's Revolutionary Guard.
President Barack Obama said the sanctions send "an unmistakable message about the international community's commitment to stopping the spread of nuclear weapons." But because many aspects of a civilian nuclear program can also serve military purposes, Iran already has most of what it would need to make such arms. And the cost of getting China and Russia to approve the new sanctions was the removal of provisions that would have really hurt Iran, such as an embargo on Iranian oil or a ban on gasoline sales.
The International Atomic Energy Agency, in its newest tally last week said Iran was now running nearly 4,000 uranium-enriching centrifuges and had amassed nearly 2.5 tons of low-enriched uranium that can be used for fuel, once Iran's first reactor goes on line, which is planned for some time this year. That's also enough for two nuclear bombs if enriched to weapons-grade levels. Iran recently began enriching to higher levels for what it says will be research reactor fuel. The process is turning out less than weapons-grade uranium. If Iran should decide to pursue a weapon, however, it would take less work to turn such higher-enriched feedstock into fissile warhead material.
It will be hard to keep Iran from obtaining more nuclear technology. Many of the companies and entities mentioned in the new sanctions list have already been subject to sanctions and Iran has found ways in the past to circumvent the penalties or create cover companies to procure items on its behalf. "I don't think anybody thinks these particular sanctions are going to trigger Iran to give up its nuclear program," said Sharon Squassoni, a nuclear proliferation expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Secret Iranian nuclear activities were first revealed eight years ago when an Iranian dissident group provided evidence of a nascent government program of uranium enrichment - the technology that can make both nuclear fuel and fissile warhead material. Iran resisted years of calls to permanently stop enriching, prompting a December 2006 UN Security Council resolution that called for member nations to prevent the supply, sale or transfer of all materials and technology that could contribute to Iran's nuclear activities.
It was too late. Building on black market components and know-how, Iran already had most of what it needed to maintain - and expand - its enrichment capacities. And clandestine deliveries of equipment continued despite the sanctions - as reflected in dozens of convictions worldwide of people found guilty of nuclear smuggling to Iran. Subsequent UN resolutions in March 2007 and March 2008 repeated demands that Iran come clean on unexplained aspects of its nuclear program that hardened suspicions it might interested in nuclear arms. But Iran refused - and continued expanding enrichment. "Sanctions won't stop Iran from continuing its nuclear, missile and space program. It may create some obstacles but Iran can find ways to go around it," said Abbas Pazooki, an Iranian commentator.
Iran says that despite its oil reserves it needs nuclear energy to guarantee its future economic sustainability. After the UN vote, Iran's UN Ambassador Mohammad Khazaee accused the United States, Britain and their allies of abusing the Security Council to attack Iran. "No amount of pressure and mischief will be able to break our nation's determination to pursue and defend its legal and inalienable rights," Khazaee said. Western intelligence reports say it is clear that Iran is interested in at least achieving the ability to produce a bomb, even if it has no specific plans to produce it at the moment. The reports from the USA, Israel, France, Britain and other nations assert that Iran has experimented with most other key aspects of warhead production and delivery.
Gen. James Cartwright, the vice chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress recently that if and when Iran decides to build its first bomb, it could amass enough highly enriched uranium to do so in as little as 12 months. An International Atomic Energy Agency document meant to be read by only a handful of the agency's top officials and leaked to the Associated Press last year expanded on some of that intelligence. It cited Iran experts at the UN nuclear monitor as believing that Tehran already has the ability to make a nuclear bomb and worked on developing a missile system that can carry an atomic warhead.
It was the clearest indication yet that those officials share Washington's views on Iran's weapon-making capabilities and missile technology - even if they have not made those views public. And because the agency is generally seen as impartial, the findings added to concerns about Iran's nuclear goals. In that document, IAEA officials assessed that Iran worked on developing a chamber inside a ballistic missile capable of housing a warhead payload "that is quite likely to be nuclear."
- That Iran engaged in "probable testing" of explosives commonly used to detonate a nuclear warhead - a method known as a "full-scale hemispherical explosively driven shock system."
- That Iran worked on developing a system "for initiating a hemispherical high explosive charge" of the kind used to help spark a nuclear blast.
Iran did not comment on the report. Whatever their efficacy, the latest sanctions may serve Iran's leadership in their drive to rally domestic support by depicting international opposition to its nuclear drive as an attack on the country. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed them soon after they were passed. "From right and from left, they adopt sanctions, but for us they are annoying flies, like a used tissue," he said Wednesday. In Vienna, International Atomic Energy Agency officials say that Iran recently served notice that it would further cut back on cooperation with the UN's nuclear monitor if new sanctions were adopted. That would reduce the outside world's already narrow window on Iran's nuclear program.
11.06.2010. The Anarchist International once more calls for a velvet revolution in Iran. The evolution of Iran's year-old opposition movement has been a study in indecision. Should it risk bloodshed and take to the streets? Is the aim 1. to topple the ruling clerics with violence, or 2. to topple the ruling clerics by a velvet revolution without significant violence, or 3. push for a velvet revolution without to topple the present ruling clerics, but making a small change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction? Any change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction is a revolution, i.e. in the interest of the people of Iran, seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank and/or income. To work for 4. gradual reform within the present system, i.e. without changing the system's coordinates, is futile, and a waste of time. The people of Iran have to decide themselves, but the Anarchist International means aim 3. is most realistic. Clues about the direction - caution over confrontation, Web posts over street rallies - took on sharper relief Friday on the eve of the first anniversary of the disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Word spread that the two main opposition leaders had called off protests for Saturday because of worries about violence. Then a student group turned to the Web to post a six-minute video revisiting the slaying of Neda Agha Soltan - whose death on a Tehran street last June became a global symbol of the post-election battles. The two events appeared to reinforce the overall narrative of the past months: The intense crackdown and threats by the authorities have intimidated the main opposition spokespersons and - without the stomach for more street confrontations - their associates have few other outlets besides the Internet. Dozens of Web posts and proclamations against Ahmadinejad and the ruling system are issued each day, but it amounts to words against muscle.
The Iranian leaders appear to be far more secure on the anniversary of the election than during the tense weeks after the vote. Last June, hundreds of thousands of protesters followed opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi through Tehran and chanted "Where's my vote?" after allegations of massive ballot fraud to sink his Green Movement. It's possible that memories of last year will be powerful enough to bring significant protest crowds onto the street Saturday for the first time in months. But the backpedaling by Mousavi and fellow opposition spokesperson Mahdi Karroubi is likely to be interpreted as another pre-emptive win for the Islamic state and its key protectors, led by the Revolutionary Guard and its network of paramilitary units known as the basij, both fascist gangs, i.e. ochlarchs.
A top Iranian police chief, Ahmad Reza Radan, said Friday any protests on the anniversary would be "confronted severely," according to the semiofficial ISNA news agency. Tehran governor, Morteza Tamadon, was quoted by the semiofficial Mehr news agency as calling the opposition a "sedition current" seeking to confront the ruling system. "A year later, it's clear that the hard-liners have won decisively through massive repression, deploying basij armed with clubs on motorcycles to curb crowds, jailing thousands of protesters, and torturing and executing some of them," wrote Juan Cole, director of the University of Michigan's Center for South Asian Studies and a frequent analyst and commentator on Iranian affairs.
This was echoed in the joint statement Thursday by Mousavi and Karroubi. They recalled the "great and unforgettable" protest marches after the election, but said they were not willing to put people in harm's way. "Once again, hard-liners and repressive forces are being organized to attack defenseless and innocent people," said the statement posted on Mousavi's website. What the text doesn't say, however, is a critical truth about the opposition. It has yet to make any headway where it would count most: among the ranks of the ordinary military to challenge the Revolutionary Guard, or among senior leaders such as former President Hashemi Rafsanjani to present an alternative to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
But that doesn't mean the past year has been without moments of deep change. A year ago, it would have been unthinkable to chant slogans against the arch-enemy of the people, Khamenei, or challenge his authority. It's now common and has punched holes in the political firewall that once separated the hierarchy and theocracy from the people. At the same time, Iran's rulers have retrenched and handed more control to the Revolutionary Guard. The result has been a far more aggressive hand at home and a less compromising attitude aboard - including a hard line over Iran's nuclear program that brought another wave of UN sanctions this week.
On Thursday, the leader of the Revolutionary Guard, Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, was quoted by Iranian media as saying that the postelection turmoil posed more of a threat to Iran's rulers than the 1980-88 war with Iraq. During Friday prayers in Tehran, ultraconservative cleric Ahmad Khatami again insisted that last year's election was free of any fraud and turned the tables on the opposition - accusing them of trying to undermine the country's "religious democracy" by challenging the outcome. Although the Islamic rulers apparently have gained the upper hand on the streets, other potential troubles are ahead.
Iran's economy suffers from a losing equation: too much money is spent on subsidies for food and fuel and not enough is coming in from exports of oil and other goods. It's compounded by double-digit inflation, 25 percent unemployment and the economic isolation from UN sanctions. Ahmadinejad is under pressure to follow through with subsidy cuts. In April, a speech by Ahmadinejad in southern Iran was interrupted by people shouting: "We are unemployed!" Later, the government posted a defense of the nation's economic policies on websites. It's part of the media-age clash that has defined much of the postelection fallout. Each side has bombarded the other with words and images on outlets ranging from Iran's English-language Press TV to the host of pro-reform news sites that have sprouted since the election. Iranian authorities have routinely cut off mobile phone and Internet access on days of expected protests. In response, opposition groups have turned to proxy sites and other ways to bypass the controls.
Mahmood Enayat, a researcher at the Oxford Internet Institute in Britain, believes Iranian authorities will strengthen their grip on the Web and force the opposition to adopt methods that don't require Internet access - noting that leaflets and cassette tapes were widely used in the 1979 Islamic Revolution. "These days the digital equivalents of them will be CDs, DVDs, memory sticks, e-mail, Bluetooth on mobile phones, peer-to-peer file sharing, etc.," he wrote in a Web post this week. "The Green Movement only has the Internet but it has to change its approach." The Anarchist International mostly agrees with Mahmood Enayat in this case.
12.06.2010. One year after disputed election, Iran's opposition remains quiet force. The Anarchist International repeats the call for a velvet revolution in Iran. The one-year anniversary of Iran's disputed election passed quietly Saturday with little more than a subdued Internet appeal by opposition spokesmen for associates to speak out on the Web against government repression. Fearing bloodshed and calculating that it would gain them nothing, the opposition movement's main spokespersons called off a day of mass protests.Witnesses and the opposition reported a few isolated confrontations in the capital.
"We have to expand social networks, Websites, these are our best means," said Mir Hossein Mousavi, a former prime minister who maintains he was robbed of the presidency through fraud in the June 12, 2009, election. "These work like an army. This is our army against their military force," he said on his website, Kaleme.com. The retreat from Iran's streets and university campuses to the Web may perhaps be seen as a victory for the ruling hard-liners and for the armed forces that preserved their grip on power with a harsh crackdown on postelection protesters, but the opposition against the right-fascist system prevails. The anniversary of the disputed election however passed with no signs of major disturbances or large public gatherings.
Witnesses reported sporadic but minor clashes at Tehran's Azadi Square between a few dozen protesters and anti-riot police swinging batons. At Tehran's Sharif University of Technology, students scuffled with hard-liners and plainclothes paramilitary personnel on campus, according to Mousavi's website. "Liar, liar," students chanted in a denunciation of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Security forces arrested a political ally of Mousavi, Davoud Roshani, and labor union activist Reza Shahabi, Kaleme.com reported. Authorities were also seen taking one person away near the entrance of Tehran University, where no gatherings were allowed to form, another witness said.
A top police official, Ahmad Reza Radan, said a small number of people were arrested in Tehran, but gave no details, the semiofficial ISNA news agency reported. In some Tehran neighborhoods after nightfall, people went to their rooftops and shouted "Allahu akbar," or "God is great," reprising a cry of protest from last year's unrest. Hundreds of police were deployed at main junctions in the capital. The government warned that any unauthorized gatherings would be harshly confronted. The scene was in stark contrast to a year ago. Then, hundreds of thousands took to the streets to protest alleged fraud, which they said deprived them of a Mousavi presidency that might have brought a measure of political and social change. Mousavi had campaigned on promises of economic reform, freedom of expression and a review of laws that discriminate against women.
Abuses against detained activists - which the government at least partially acknowledged took place - pushed some opposition supporters to go even further and challenge the ruling clerical establishment itself. But trials - some of which have resulted in death sentences - and threats to put down unauthorized demonstrations have left the movement with nowhere to go. Even on the Web, Iranian authorities chase them, blocking sites and jamming Internet and mobile phone service at times. The tightening controls have led to criticism of what Mousavi on Saturday called "an inclination toward dictatorship" by Iran's leadership - a potent jab from a man once considered a regime insider and who played an active role in the 1979 revolution that brought clerical rule to Iran.
"Those at the top (of the ruling system) think they are special creatures of God almighty and that God pays special attention to (him); that whatever he says must be carried out ... and there is no belief in collective logic," Mousavi said, in an apparent reference to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Mousavi pledged Saturday to continue a peaceful struggle against the government of Ahmadinejad, whose presidency has coincided with a sinking Iranian economy and growing international isolation as a result of the defiance over the country's nuclear program. "We need to spread awareness," Mousavi said. "This is the point of vulnerability of those who are after despotism. If awareness is spread, there will be a huge popular force behind the demand for change." He and fellow opposition leader Mahdi Karroubi have declared the price of more direct confrontation to be too high.
'Nima', a protester, for his part, started an underground awareness campaign in January through which he distributes homemade DVDs about the Green Movement into smaller cities in rural Iran. The videos include footage of speeches from human rights activists and opposition leaders and news clips. He pays for the project out of his own pocket and with the help of a few friends. "There may not be as many demonstrations, but people know the movement still exists and it's more dangerous because you can't see it," Nima said. "Every movement takes time. We shouldn't expect to see any results after only one year," he continued. "You have to be patient. If you really want to get somewhere you have to continue working and struggling." The Anarchist International repeats the call for a velvet revolution in Iran. A velvet revolution without to topple the present ruling clerics, but making a small change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction! Any change in the system's coordinates in libertarian direction is a revolution, i.e. in the interest of the people of Iran, seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank and/or income. See also the report of 11.06.2010.
26.06.2010. Anti-Iranian regime rally in Paris. A rally organizd by an Iranian exile group on the outskirts of Paris has drawn thousands of supporters from across Europe. The National Council of Resistance of Iran says this was the biggest ever meeting of Iranians outside Iran, but there has been no independent estimate of numbers. Leader Maryam Rajavi called for the "creation of a new society, based on freedom and democracy". "We think that sanctions are good but they are not enough. The policy in Iran should rely on bringing about change by the Iranian people, and resistance. This is the message we would like to send to the Iranian community." said Shahin Gobadi of the NCRI .
Prominent political personalities included the Spanish former Prime Minister, Jose Maria Aznar, who said sanctions against Tehran were not enough: "The international community lost a very important opportunity a year ago when they did not give strong support to the those fighting on the streets in different cities. And now we continue, we approve sanctions and I consider this is not enough." Campaigners also paid their respects to those who died in post-election violence in Iran last year. The France-based umbrella group includes the People's Mujahedeen Organization of Iran, which was on the EU-s list of banned terrorist groups until recently.
09.07.2010. Iran woman escapes stoning death for adultery. The authorities in Iran have announced that a woman convicted of adultery will not be stoned to death. But it is not clear whether they have lifted the death sentence against Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who has been in prison in Tabriz since 2006. The 43-year-old had already been punished with flogging for an "illicit relationship" outside marriage when another court tried her for adultery. There has been an international campaign, included anarchists, to prevent her being stoned.
17.07.2010. Iranian police said they had arrested 40 people in connection with Thursday's blasts, which killed at least 27 people. Those detained were not accused of direct responsibility for the attacks. A Sunni rebel group, Jundullah, has said it carried out the attacks in revenge for the hanging of its leader by Iranian authorities. The anarchists condemn both the hanging and the bomb blasts.
12.08.2010. Iran TV airs 'confession' from woman facing stoning. Iranian state TV has aired what it says is a confession by a woman under threat of being stoned to death for adultery. In the interview shown on Wednesday, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani purportedly admits conspiring to murder her husband in 2005 and denounces her lawyer. After an international outcry by anarchists and others, Iranian officials temporarily halted her stoning sentence last month, but there are fears she will now be hanged. The 43-year-old had said she was forced to confess to the charges of adultery.
In May 2006, a criminal court in East Azerbaijan province found Ms Ashtiani guilty of having had an "illicit relationship" with two men following the death of her husband. She was given 99 lashes. But that September, during the trial of a man accused of murdering her husband, another court reopened an adultery case based on events that allegedly took place before her husband died. Despite retracting a confession she said she had been forced to make under duress, Ms Ashtiani was convicted of "adultery while being married" and sentenced to death by stoning.Murder case. The mother-of-two's alleged confession to complicity in her husband's murder, which was made in Azeri and dubbed into Persian, was aired on one of the main state-run television channels. The 43-year-old had said she was forced to confess to the charges of adultery. There was no mention of the stoning sentence and the focus of the interview was moved away from the allegation of adultery. The woman, whose face was pixelated, admitted her part in the 2005 killing, despite Ms Ashtiani having earlier told Western media that she had been acquitted of the charge. She said her husband's cousin had told her he wanted to kill her husband, but that she had assumed this was a joke.
"Later I realized that he was a killer," the woman said. One day the man came to her house "with all the required equipment," she added. "He had brought electric devices, wire and gloves. He then killed my husband by electrocuting him. He asked me before to send my children to their grandmother's house." The woman also criticized her lawyer, Mohammed Mostafaie, for interfering in the case. "Why has he taken my case to the TV? Why has he disgraced me?" Mr Mostafaie has fled Iran and is now seeking asylum in the Anarchy of Norway.
Iran defiance. Another of Ms Ashtiani's lawyers has said that she was tortured for two days in prison to force her to make her televised confession on Wednesday. Human rights activists, including anarchist, fear that she is now in danger of imminent execution. The Iranian authorities are clearly trying to move the focus away from the adultery charge and the stoning sentence, and to brand Ms Ashtiani a murderer. The airing of the TV confession may be a sign that she could soon be executed, probably by hanging. It seems the Iranian officials are sending a tough message to Western media and human rights groups included anarchists, that if they "interfere in Iranian affairs", and cause embarrassment, it will be counter-productive.
09.09.2010. The Anarchist International declared Thursday that Iran's suspension of a stoning sentence against a woman convicted of adultery is not enough and demands it be completely overturned. Iran's concession that the punishment against Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani could be eased did not meet the human rights conditions the AI is insisting on. AI will work hard to achieve that the punishment will be unequivocally repealed. The Anarchist International, the European Union and the continent's biggest human rights organization have criticized Iran for its plan to stone the 43-year-old mother of two even if Tehran has put the plan on hold for now. The plight of Ashtiani has caused a global outcry and widespread criticism of Iran's justice system, which still includes stoning.
This inhuman conviction is indefensible and has raised the AI's abhorrence. Human rights, particularly women's rights, are systematically thwarted in Iran. Iran says it has put the stoning on hold for now, but has also indicated Ashtiani could be hanged for her conviction of playing a role in her husband's 2005 murder. Late Wednesday, Tehran's envoy to the Holy See held out hope for some easing of punishment. Ambassador Ali Akbar Naseri stressed though that Ashtiani had "had illicit relations with numerous men" and had been involved in the killing of her husband. "Her guilt has been demonstrated," he said. Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi insisted the issue went beyond the single case of Ashtiani. "It is of course important to save the life of this woman. But what is ultimately important is to make sure that this punishment of death by stoning is abolished, because there are other women waiting to be stoned to death. So we should abolish it altogether," she said in Brussels. The Anarchist International mostly agrees.
14.02.2011. 'Death to dictators' - Chaos in Iran - Iranian police fire tear gas at opposition rally in Tehran. Security services have kept a high profile in Tehran to try to prevent rallies. Iranian police have fired tear gas at opposition demonstrators gathering in central Tehran in support of the protests in Egypt. Central Tehran is a total chaos. Severe clashes were taking place between protesters and police and there had been many arrests. Iranian police have placed opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi under house arrest, his official website says. It says the move is intended to block him from attending the rally in Tehran. Thousands of people defied the government ban and gathered in the city centre chanting "death to dictators". Riot police and plainclothes police backed by the Republican Guards, i.e. fascist mobs, used tear gas to disperse the protesters and many were arrested. Other witnesses said police also fired paintball guns at demonstrators. There are also reports of pro-opposition rallies in the cities of Isfahan and Shiraz.
Internet blocked. Mr Mousavi's detention is the latest in a series of arrests of people linked to Mr Mousavi and fellow opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi, who is also under house arrest. Several opposition groups had vowed to take part in the protest, although officials have banned the gathering. Although Iran's establishment officially supports the Egyptian popular protests, it says the rallies are a "political move" by the two opposition leaders. Authorities have stepped up security in the capital, blocked access to internet sites, and started jamming satellite news channels. Police helicopters also hovered overhead. Analysts say Tehran is trying to stop opposition groups from using the Egypt rally as a means to re-ignite anti-government protests - last seen in December 2009 - against the disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Activist climbed a tall crane. In an unusual move, an activist climbed a tall crane in central Tehran on Monday morning and began inviting people to attend today's rally. The protester was later arrested by police. Also on Monday morning, Iranian police vans blocked the lane leading to the house of Mr Mousavi and disconnected his mobile phones and land lines, his website Kaleme.com said. Last week, almost a dozen people close to Mr Mousavi were detained. Both the Iranian government and the opposition have claimed credit for the recent popular uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt. The government says the mass protests were inspired by Iran's 1979 revolution, while the opposition says it was its 2009 protests that encouraged the unrest.
The fiercest clashes were reported on Azerbaijan Street, close to Azadi Square, and a number of ambulances were seen coming and going. Witnesses told the Associated Press news agency that at least three protesters were wounded by bullets, with dozens of others beaten by the security forces and taken to hospital. Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported that one person had been shot dead by protesters and several others wounded. Mr Mousavi's website, Kaleme.com, said that - according to unconfirmed reports - "hundreds of protesters" had been arrested. There has been no official confirmation, but witnesses told BBC Persian that dozens had been taken away in police vans from the area.
Police also later surrounded Tehran University and Sharif University, and the houses of former President Mohammad Khatami and Abdollah Nuri, a former interior minister and head of Tehran City Council. As night fell, riot police remained deployed in central Tehran, but the protesters dispersed. The local electricity supply was also cut. Earlier an activist wearing a green headband - the colour of the main opposition movement - as mentioned, was detained after he climbed a tall crane in the capital and began inviting people to attend Monday's demonstration.
Clinton slams 'hypocrisy'. Although Iran's establishment officially supports the Egyptian protests, it says the rallies in Iran are a "political move" by opposition leaders. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton hailed the courage and aspirations of the protesters, and spoke of the Iranian government's "hypocrisy". "We are against violence and we would call to account the Iranian government that is once again using its security forces and resorting to violence to prevent the free expression of ideas from their own people," she told reporters in Washington. "Secondly, we support the universal human rights of the Iranian people. They deserve to have the same rights that they saw played being out in Egypt and that are part of their own birthright." "And thirdly, we think that there needs to be a commitment to open up the political system in Iran, to hear the voices of the opposition and civil society," she added. Turkish President Abdullah Gul, who is on a visit to Iran, earlier warned that "when leaders and heads of countries do not pay attention to the demands of their nations, the people themselves take action to achieve their demands".
15.02.2011. Iranian lawmakers: Put opposition leaders on trial. Hardline Iranian lawmakers called on Tuesday for the country's opposition leaders to face trial and be put to death, a day after clashes between opposition protesters and security forces left two people dead and dozens injured. Tens of thousands of people turned out for the opposition rally Monday in solidarity with Egypt's popular revolt that toppled President Hosni Mubarak after nearly 30 years in power. The demonstration was the first major show of strength from Iran's beleaguered opposition after canceling planned rallies for the past year when authorities refused permission.
In Washington, President Barack Obama criticized the Iranian government for its harsh treatment of protesters and noted the irony of its support for Egypt's uprisings while repressing demonstrators at home. At an open session of parliament Tuesday, pro-government legislators demanded opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mahdi Karroubi and former reformist President Mohammad Khatami face be held responsible for the protests. Pumping their fists in the air, the lawmakers chanted "death to Mousavi, Karroubi and Khatami." "We believe the people have lost their patience and demand capital punishment" for the opposition leaders, 221 lawmakers said in a statement. Hardliners have long sought to put senior opposition figures on trial, but the calls for the death penalty signaled an escalation in their demands. Parliament formed a special committee to review the case and decide in coming days about how the government should deal with the opposition leaders.
Iran has already tried scores of opposition figures and activists on charges of fomenting the mass protests following the country's disputed 2009 presidential elections that saw Mahmoud Ahmadinejad win a second term. More than 80 of people were sentenced to prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years. The opposition says scores were killed in the massive crackdown on those protests, while the government says only around 30 people died. Obama was asked at a White House news conference about the mood of change sweeping the Middle East following the uprisings in Cairo and he singled out Iran's attitude. "It's ironic that the Iranian regime is pretending to celebrate what happened in Egypt," Obama said. "They acted in direct contrast to what happened in Egypt" by using force against demonstrators.
Iranian leaders, falsely, had sought to portray the toppling of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali in Tunisia and Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, both secular leaders, as Islamic uprisings. Following Monday's opposition demonstrations, the first since December 2009, authorities vowed to move quickly to stifle the opposition before its gains momentum. "The judiciary will quickly and resolutely deal with major elements and those who violated public order and peace," the spokesman for Iran's judiciary and state prosecutor, Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehi, told the official IRNA news agency.
The US has voiced support for the demonstrators. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Monday the protesters "deserve to have the same rights that they saw being played out in Egypt and are part of their own birthright." Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, on Tuesday rejected Clinton's remarks, and accused the US of "meddling" in Iranian affairs. Also Tuesday, Iranian officials confirmed that two people had died in Monday's protests. IRNA quoted the security chief for Iran's Culture Ministry, Gholam Ali Zarei, as saying Sane Jaleh, a 26-year-old student at Tehran's University of Art, was killed. He described him as a government supporter.
Later in the day, Kazem Jalali spokesman of the parliamentary committee on national security and foreign policy told the semiofficial Ilna news agency that one of the injured also died. The victim was not identified. Acting police commander Gen. Ahmad Reza Radan told IRNA that several people were arrested, but did not specify how many. Radan claimed that members of the Iranian opposition group Mujahedeen Khalq, opened fire at police and protesters, IRNA said. He did not provide any evidence to back up his claim. He also accused the US, Britain and Israel of stoking the protests - a common allegation from officials in Tehran following any unrest in Iran.
01.03.2011. Police fire tear gas to disperse protesters. Police in Tehran used tear gas and batons Tuesday to disperse anti-government protesters demanding the release of opposition leaders, with several people arrested in the biggest street clashes in Iran's capital in more than two weeks, witnesses and opposition websites said. Protesters rallied at several points in the capital, chanting "Death to the dictator" and urging authorities to free Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi, whose family and supporters claim are now under full time detention, according to kaleme.com. Witnesses said riot police charged on protesters in central Tehran to try to scatter crowds. Some police took swipes at cars whose drivers were believed to be honking their horns in support of the demonstrators.
Family members and opposition activists say the two leaders have been moved from house arrest to a Tehran prison along with their wives. Iranian authorities deny the reports, but the two opposition leaders have not been seen in public or have posted statements on their websites in more than a week. Mousavi and Karroubi were put under house arrest after they called for a Feb. 14 protest rally, the largest in more than a year following a relentless crackdown by Iranian authorities. Clashes between protesters and security forces during the demonstrations killed two and wounded dozens. The opposition movement -- dispirited and in disarray just a month ago -- has been revived by inspiration from the Arab world's political revolts and the reports of the detentions of Karroubi and Mousavi, who claims he was rightful winner of 2009 election and that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected through massive vote fraud.
Both Mousavi and Karroubi -- who also ran in the June 2009 election – have been under increasing pressure from authorities who crushed street protests by their supporters. The protests that swept Iran after the disputed election grew into a larger movement opposed to Iran's ruling system. Hundreds of thousands peacefully took to the streets, but a heavy security crackdown crushed the protests. Iran's leadership has rejected calls by hardliners to bring the two to trial on anti-state charges, fearing that it could serve as a rallying point for the beleaguered opposition's supporters. The current claims about their detentions, however, could also help to re-energize opposition forces. Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Iran will not respond to international questions about the whereabouts of the two, adding that the country considers the matter a "completely domestic" affair.
The semiofficial news agency ISNA quoted state prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehei as saying the two were not detained but did not elaborate. On Monday, he said authorities have cut all outside contact with them as part of a campaign to silence dissent. However, the opposition and their relatives said they are being held in a military garrison in Tehran. There has been no independent confirmation of their location. White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters Monday: "We obviously find the detention of opposition leaders to be unacceptable and we call on them to be treated well and released." Mehmanparast denounced outside pressures to clarify the status of the two opposition figures. "The internal issues of our country are completely domestic and no country is and will be allowed to interfere in the internal affairs of our country," he told reporters. Mehmanparast said any "issues relating to" Mousavi and Karroubi "will be dealt in the framework of law by judicial authorities."
26.11.2011. Tensions have been rising between Iran and the West. Iran will target NATO's missile defense installations in Turkey if the US or Israel attacks the Islamic Republic, a senior commander of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard said Saturday. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the head of the Guards' aerospace division, said the warning is part of a new defense strategy to counter what he described as an increase in threats from the US and Israel. Tensions have been rising between Iran and the West since the release of a report earlier this month by the International Atomic Energy Agency that said for the first time that Tehran was suspected of conducting secret experiments whose sole purpose was the development of nuclear arms.
The US and its Western allies suspect Iran of trying to produce atomic weapons, and Israel, which views Tehran as an existential threat, has warned of a possible strike on Iran's nuclear program. Iran says its program is for peaceful purposes. "Should we be threatened, we will target NATO's missile defense shield in Turkey and then hit the next targets," the semiofficial Mehr news agency quoted Hajizadeh as saying. Tehran says NATO's early warning radar station in Turkey is meant to protect Israel against Iranian missile attacks if a war breaks out with the Jewish state. Ankara agreed to host the radar in September as part of NATO's missile defense system aimed at countering ballistic missile threats from neighboring Iran.
A military installation in the Turkish town of Kurecik, some 435 miles (700 kilometers) west of the Iranian border, has been designated as the radar site, according to Turkish government officials. Hajizadeh said the United States also plans to install similar stations in Arab states, which has spurred Iran to alter its military defense strategy. "Based on orders from the exalted commander in chief, we will respond to threats with threats," he was quoted as saying. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say on all state matters, is also commander in chief of Iran's armed forces.
Another senior Guard commander, Yadollah Javani, threatened that Tehran will target Israel's nuclear facilities should the Jewish state attack Iran. "If Israel fires a missile at our nuclear facilities or vital installations, it should know that Israel's nuclear centers will be the target of our missiles," the semiofficial ISNA news agency quoted him as saying. Also Saturday, the chief of Iran's elite Quds Force said he doesn't fear assassination and is ready for "martyrdom." The comments by Quds Force commander Brig. Gen. Ghassem Soleimani were published in several Iranian newspapers. The Quds Force is the special foreign operations unit of the country's powerful Revolutionary Guard, and Soleimani is a key figure in Iran's military establishment but rarely speaks in public.
Tensions have increased in recent weeks between Iran and the US, with several American neoconservatives urging the Obama administration to use covert action against Iran and kill some of its top officials, including Soleimani. The force has been accused by the Americans of involvement in an alleged plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington. Two men, including an alleged member of Iran's Quds Force, have been charged in New York federal court in the case. Iran has dismissed the American claims as a "foolish plot", saying US officials have offered no proof. Source: AP.
30.11.2011. Britain withdrawing some embassy staff from Iran. Britain began withdrawing some diplomatic staff and families from Tehran on Wednesday as international condemnation spread over attacks on British compounds by hard-line protesters. Iran called the mayhem unacceptable, but the parliament speaker said Britain's "domination-seeking" policies were ultimately to blame. The Anarchy of Norway, meanwhile, closed its embassy in Tehran due to security concerns after Tuesday's assault on the British Embassy and a residential complex. France and others joined the global criticism.
Mobs hauled down British flags and ransacked offices in retaliation for Britain's support of tighter sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program. In London, the Foreign Office said some diplomatic staff and dependents would leave Iran. But it declined to say how many people were being removed or give other details. "Ensuring the safety of our staff and their families is our immediate priority," said the statement. It noted some diplomatic work is ongoing, though the embassy is officially closed. The Iranian government has expressed regret about "unacceptable behavior" of protesters, whose attacks began after anti-British demonstrations apparently authorized by authorities. But Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said that the "wrath of (students) resulted from several decades of domination-seeking behavior of Britain."
Larijani - addressing an open session of parliament Wednesday - also called the UN Security Council's condemnation of the embassy attack a "hasty move." Larijani's comments reflect the deepening diplomatic crisis between Iran and Britain, whose relations have in the past gone through periods of upheavals. On Sunday, Iran's parliament approved a bill to downgrade relations with Britain, one of America's closest allies with diplomatic envoys in the Islamic Republic. Larijani insisted that the decision to scale back relations needs to be carried out immediately. But President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has remained silent and his representatives have publicly opposed parliament's decision.
Iran's Foreign Ministry said it must carry out the decision after the parliament vote was approved Monday by Iran's constitutional watchdog, the Guardian Council. Washington and Tehran have had no diplomatic relations since militants stormed the US Embassy in Tehran after the 1979 Islamic Revolution and held 52 hostages for 444 days. In the early moments of that siege, protesters tossed out papers from the compound and pulled down the US flag. Britain broke off relations with Iran after the Islamic Revolution and gradually restored during the 1990s. China, which is one of Iran's key allies, refused to criticize Iran by name for the attack on the British compounds, but said "the security and dignity" of diplomatic missions should be protected.
British Prime Minister David Cameron chaired meetings of the British government crisis committee late on Tuesday and early on Wednesday and praised diplomats "who often face grave dangers, as they did yesterday in Tehran." "We will consider taking some very tough action in response to this completely disgraceful and appalling action by the Iranians," Cameron told lawmakers Wednesday at the House of Commons. About 24 British embassy staff and dependents are based in Tehran. All are adults since Britain will not post diplomats to Iran with small children for security reasons. A senior Iranian police official, Ahmad Reza Radan, was quoted by the semiofficial Mehr news agency as saying some protesters who broke into the embassy have been identified and will be arrested. No figures were given. But the Fars news agency said 12 students have been arrested.
Norwegian foreign ministry spokeswoman Hilde Steinfeld said the decision to close the embassy was taken late Tuesday, but diplomatic staff have not been evacuated from the Iran. Steinfeld did not give further details, but said "the decision follows security concern ... in context with the attack on the British Embassy." Norway has four to five diplomatic staff deployed in the Iranian capital, she said. Neighboring Sweden, which has not closed its embassy or evacuated staff from Tehran, also showed its disapproval of the attack by summoning the Iranian ambassador to the Foreign Ministry in Stockholm on Wednesday morning. "Iran has a duty to protect diplomatic premises and authorities there should have intervened immediately," Swedish Foreign Ministry spokesman Teo Zetterman said.
France's budget minister, Valerie Pecresse, said the attacks showed the need for stronger sanctions on Iran, which could include a possible total embargo on oil exports or the freeze of Iranian central bank holdings. The assaults began after protest rallies organized by pro-government groups in universities and Islamic seminaries. It was not clear, however, if the attackers were mostly students or led by hard-line forces such as the basij paramilitary corps, which is run by Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard. The attackers ripped down the Union Jack, torched an embassy vehicle and tossed looted documents before riot police eventually cleared the areas. "Death to England!" some cried outside the compound in the first significant assault of a foreign diplomatic area in Iran in years.
Britain ordered Iran later on Wednesday to remove all its diplomats from the UK within 48 hours following attacks on its embassy and a residential compound in Tehran - one of the most significant diplomatic retaliations against Iran since the 1979 US embassy crisis. Foreign Secretary William Hague told the House of Commons that Britain had also withdrawn its entire diplomatic staff from Iran after angry mobs as mentioned hauled down Union Jack flags, torched a vehicle and tossed looted documents through windows. The rare move to kick out a country's entire diplomatic corps marks a significant souring of ties between Iran and the West, amid deepening suspicions over Tehran's pursuit of nuclear weapons. Sources: AP & AIIS.
02-03.12.2011. Iranian diplomats expelled from London arrive home. Iranian diplomats expelled from London in retaliation for attacks on British compounds in Tehran arrived home Saturday, the official IRNA news agency reported, sealing Iran's most serious diplomatic rift with the West in decades. About 150 hard-liners waiting with flower necklaces had gathered at Tehran's Mehrabad airport to give the roughly two dozen diplomats and their families a hero's welcome. But the Iranian government, apparently opposed to any high-profile display that could worsen the fallout, took the diplomats off unseen from a backdoor, reflecting Iran's own internal political rifts. Tuesday's storming of the British Embassy and residential complex - which the British government alleges was sanctioned by Tehran's ruling elite - deepened Iran's isolation, which has grown over the decade-long standoff with the West over its nuclear program.
Germany, France and the Netherlands have recalled their ambassadors, and Italy and Spain summoned Iranian envoys to condemn the attacks. It amounted to the most serious diplomatic fallout with the West since the 1979 takeover of the US Embassy after the Islamic Revolution, and some Iranian political figures have voiced doubts over whether anything can be gained from escalating the diplomatic battle. The obstruction of Saturday's welcome ceremony reflected the disagreements between hard-liners and the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which opposed downgrading relations with Britain and condemned the attack on Britain's embassy.
Iran's relations with Britain have become increasingly strained in recent months, largely due to tensions over Tehran's refusal to halt uranium enrichment, a key component of its nuclear program. The process is of deep concern internationally because it can be used to produce material for nuclear warheads in addition to reactor fuel. Iran insists its program is entirely peaceful. Along with the United States and other nations in Europe, Britain has backed sanctions that have so far failed to push Iran to halt its enrichment program.
Hard-liners in Iran have said the embassy attack was an outpouring of the wrath of the Iranian people who believe Britain is a hostile country seeking to damage and weaken the Islamic Republic. Mohammad Mohammadian, a representative of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, praised the attackers, saying they had targeted the "epicenter of sedition." Iran's hard-line constitutional watchdog, the Guardian Council, approved a parliamentary bill into law requiring the Iranian government to downgrade relations with Britain. The government opposed it but said it would carry out the law.
The diplomatic freeze from Europe, including key trading partner Germany, further isolates Iran just weeks after a report by the UN nuclear watchdog agency that alleged Iran was making strides toward mastering critical elements for atomic weapons. The current breakdown in relations with the West could embolden hard-liners who want a tougher stance against the International Atomic Energy Agency, which they accuse of being manipulated by the US and allies. Britain's ambassador to Iran, Dominick Chilcott - now back in Britain - offered new details about the attacks, saying the experience had been "frightening."
"We had no idea how it was going to end," he said, describing how the mob trashed rooms, damaged furniture, scrawled graffiti and tore up a portrait of Queen Victoria, as staff took shelter in a secure area of the embassy. "It felt like very spiteful, mindless vandalism, but it wasn't quite mindless," Chilcott said. "They removed anything that was electronic - mobile telephones, personal computers - anything that might give information about who you were talking to or what you were doing." At one point, the intruders started a fire inside the chancery building, forcing the staff to leave the safe area, climb down a fire escape and exit the building. A small number of police escorted them to a building on the edge of the compound and told them to lie low.
"We turned all the lights out and we sat in the dark and we could hear the noise of the intruders going on around us," he said. He said seven staff at a separate residential compound that was also attacked were seized and "quite roughly handled" by the invaders. British Foreign Secretary William Hague has led the accusations that the rioters had a green light from Iranian authorities, including the powerful Revolutionary Guard. On Thursday, he said the attacks were "clearly premeditated" by high-ranking officials.
Iranian government officials said the storming of the embassy by angry protesters was unexpected and Iranian police intervened to protect the British diplomats and get the attackers out of the buildings. The demonstrations had been organized by hard-line groups on university campuses and Islamic seminaries and included denunciations of the latest sanctions on Iran over its nuclear efforts. Such major anti-Western rallies are rarely allowed to occur without official approval and often include state-backed forces including a paramilitary group known as the Basij, which is part of the vast security network controlled by the Revolutionary Guard.
Images broadcast around the world showed demonstrators tearing down Union Jack flags, brandishing a looted picture of Queen Elizabeth II and tossing out looted documents. The deepening tensions with Britain and others may also trigger further rifts within Iran. For months, Iran's ruling system has ordered arrests and intimidation against political allies of President Ahmadinejad, who has sharply fallen from favor after challenging decisions by the head of the theocracy, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Ahmadinejad has remained silent since the attacks, but his supporters have raised questions about whether Iran's interests are served by a diplomatic battle with the West. Britain has closed down its embassy in Iran. Sources: AP and AIIS.
15.06.2013. Iranian election. Iranian centrist candidate Hassan Rouhani has won the islamic republic's presidential election, state media announced Saturday 15.06.2013. Rouhani will succeed two-term President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as one of the country's most visible figures, at a time when it's dealing with painful economic sanctions tied to international concern about its nuclear program. But he won't be Iran's most powerful man. That distinction belongs to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has been Iran's supreme leader since 1989. Iran will still be an ultra-authoritarian regime, hierarchy, i.e. rule by priests. Sources: CNN and AIIS.
04.08.2013. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani takes oath of office. Iran's parliament has inaugurated Hassan Rouhani as president, who promised a government of "wisdom and hope" representing all Iranians. In his speech, Mr Rouhani promised moderation based on tolerance, but was critical of international sanctions. He said he would dedicate himself to "serving the people, spreading the religion and ethics and improving the country."
24.11.2013. Nuclear deal. A historic deal was struck early Sunday between Iran and six world powers over Tehran's nuclear program that slows the country's nuclear development program in exchange for lifting some sanctions while a more formal agreement is worked out. The agreement -- described as an "initial, six-month" deal -- includes "substantial limitations that will help prevent Iran from creating a nuclear weapon," U.S. President Barack Obama said in a nationally televised address. Source: CNN.
02.04.2015. Nuclear deal update. An outline agreement on the future shape of Iran's nuclear programme has been reached after marathon talks with six major powers in Switzerland. Under the deal, Iran will reduce its uranium enrichment capacity in exchange for phased sanctions relief. US President Barack Obama said a "historic understanding" had been reached with Iran. The world powers and Iran now aim to draft a comprehensive nuclear accord by 30 June. The framework agreement was announced by the European Union and Iran after eight days of negotiations in Lausanne. The talks between the so-called P5+1 - the US, UK, France, China and Russia plus Germany - and Iran at Lausanne's Beau-Rivage Palace hotel continued beyond the original self-imposed deadline of 31 March. Iran denies Western claims it is trying to build a nuclear weapon. It entered negotiations in order to see sanctions lifted. According to the US, the outline deal includes the following conditions:
Mr Obama said the deal's implementation would be closely watched. "If Iran cheats, the world will know it," he said, adding that the deal was based not on trust but on "unprecedented verification". He said the framework agreement had come after "months of tough, principled diplomacy", and that it was "a good deal".
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, speaking at a news conference alongside Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif after agreement was reached, said a "decisive step" had been achieved. "We have reached solutions on key parameters of a joint comprehensive plan of action," she said. Negotiators would now start "drafting the text" of the plan "guided by the solutions", Ms Mogherini added.
News that a deal had been agreed emerged on Twitter, before the official news conference. In a tweet, Mr Zarif said: "Found solutions, ready to start drafting immediately." And US Secretary of State John Kerry tweeted: "Big day... Back to work soon on final deal." But Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu also took to Twitter to declare: "Any deal must significantly roll back Iran's nuclear capabilities and stop its terrorism and aggression." Source: BBC.
03.04.2015. The proposed deal on Iran's nuclear program would pose "a grave danger" to the world and threaten Israel's existence because it would leave Iran with an infrastructure it could use to produce nuclear bombs when restrictions on its program eventually are removed, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said today."Such a deal does not block Iran's path to the bomb," Netanyahu said. "Such a deal paves Iran's path to the bomb." Six world powers, led by the United States, on Thursday announced a framework deal with Iran limiting its nuclear program. The agreement outlines major points to be fleshed out in a final deal, the details of which have to be worked out by the end of June. Source: CNN.
14.07.2015. World powers have reached a deal with Iran on limiting Iranian nuclear activity in return for the lifting of international economic sanctions. Iran's foreign minister called the agreement "historic", saying it opened a "new chapter of hope". It reportedly gives UN nuclear inspectors extensive but not automatic access to sites within Iran. Negotiations between Iran and six world powers - the US, UK, France, China and Russia plus Germany - began in 2006. The so-called P5+1 - want Iran to scale back its sensitive nuclear activities to ensure that it cannot build a nuclear weapon. Iran, which wants crippling international sanctions lifted, has always insisted that its nuclear work is peaceful. EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the deal was "a sign of hope for the entire world". "It is a decision that can open the way to a new chapter in international relations," she said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reacted by saying that Iran would receive a "sure path to nuclear weapons" and "a cash bonanza of hundreds of billions of dollars". Source: BBC.
16.01.2016. The IAEA [the International Atomic Energy Agency] says Iran has completed all the necessary steps in an agreement aimed at reining in its nuclear program, clearing the way for the removal of some sanctions. Iran has various obligations under the nuclear agreement. It must reduce its level of uranium enrichment, dramatically reduce the size of its stockpile of enriched uranium, reduce the number of centrifuges and agree to unfettered international inspections. But not all nuclear-related sanctions will be rescinded immediately -- that won't happen for about 10 years, should the deal hold. But Iran will be able to sell its oil again on world markets and its banks will be able to connect to the global system. Source: CNN.
28.02.2016. Allies of Iran's reformist President Hassan Rouhani have won a landslide victory in Tehran, in the first parliamentary vote since Iran signed a nuclear deal with world powers. With 90% of the votes counted, the pro-Rouhani List of Hope is set to take all 30 parliamentary seats in the capital. The leading conservative candidate Gholamali Haddad-Adel is in 31st place. Millions voted on Friday to elect the 290-seat parliament as well as members of the Assembly of Experts. The 88-member assembly appoints Iran's Supreme Leader and might end up choosing a successor to Ayatollah Khamenei, who is 76 and has suffered ill-health. Source: BBC.
29.02.2016. Final election results confirm big gains for reformists in Iran. It is being described as a blow to Iran’s conservative Islamic establishment. Final results after elections on Friday 26.02.2016 show that allies of the reformist President Hassan Rouhani have made big gains. They have won all of the 30 parliamentary seats up for grabs in the capital and 15 out of the 16 Tehran seats in the so-called Assembly of Experts, ousting two prominent conservatives including the speaker. Elias Hazrati, a newly-elected reformist deputy, told euronews: “Even though a big majority of well-known reformers were not able to stand or were disqualified, they’ve shown that they’re flexible and able to adapt to the situation and propose new faces. “People had a good memory of the reformist period and Mr. Khatami, and they’ve expressed their confidence in the whole reformist movement.” Commentators say the results could mean Iran will further its new ties with the West after the recent nuclear deal that resulted in sanctions being lifted. However, despite the gains by Rouhani and his allies, the conservatives remain in power overall due to the two-tier system of clerical and republican rule. Euronews correspondent Javad Montazeri reported: “We can say the result is a victory for the reformers and the moderates. “As well as supporting the policies of Rouhani’s government, the new parliament can also embark on economic and political reforms and open up even further relations with Western countries and attract investment in Iran.” Source: Euronews.
20.05.2017. Presidential election. Riding a large turnout from Iran’s urban middle classes, President Hassan Rouhani won re-election in a landslide on Saturday 20.05.2017, giving him a mandate to continue his quest to expand personal freedoms and open Iran’s ailing economy to global investors. Perhaps as important, analysts say, the resounding victory should enable him to strengthen the position of the moderate and reformist faction as the country prepares for the end of the rule of the 78-year-old supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Of the 41 million votes cast, the Interior Ministry said, Mr. Rouhani won 23 million (or 57 percent), soundly defeating his chief opponent, Ebrahim Raisi, who received 15.7 million (38.5 percent). Iranian state television congratulated Mr. Rouhani on his victory. Turnout was heavy, with more than 70 percent of Iran’s 56 million voters casting ballots. Despite the healthy margin of victory, Mr. Rouhani, 68, will face considerable headwinds, both at home and abroad, as he embarks on his second term. He badly needs to demonstrate progress on overhauling the moribund economy. Source: NY-Times.
07.06.2017. Islamic State IS/ISIL/ISIS/Daesh. Twin attacks on the Iranian parliament and Ayatollah Khomeini's mausoleum in the capital, Tehran, have killed at least 12 people and injured many more. The assault on the parliament appears to be over, after hours of intermittent gunfire there. A suicide bomber detonated a device at the mausoleum. Iran's Revolutionary Guards said Saudi Arabia was behind the attacks. The Islamic State (IS) group has claimed it carried out the attacks, which would be a first in Iran. In a statement, the group said five of its fighters had taken part and warned of further attacks against Iran's Shia Muslim majority. President Hassan Rouhani said Iran's message was that "terrorism is a global problem", and he called for "regional and international co-operation and unity". The anarchists, the Anarchist International - AI/IFA and the Anarchist Confederation of Asia and the Middle East - ACAME condemn IS and the terrorist attacks. Sources: BBC and AIIS.
29.12.2017. Anti-government demonstrations that began in one city on Thursday 28.12.2017 have now spread to several major cities in Iran. Large numbers are reported to have turned out in Rasht, in the north, and Kermanshar, in the west, with smaller protests in Shiraz, Isfahan and Hamadan. The protests began against rising prices but have spiralled into a general outcry against clerical rule. A small number of people have been arrested in Tehran, the capital. They were among a group of 50 people who gathered in a city square, Tehran's deputy governor-general for security affairs told the Iranian Labour News Agency. The governor-general of Tehran earlier said that any such gatherings would be firmly dealt with by the police, who are out in force on main intersections. The demonstrations are the most serious and widespread expression of public discontent in Iran since protests in 2009 that followed a disputed election, correspondents say. The anarchists, the Anarchist International - AI/IFA and the Anarchist Confederation of Asia and the Middle East - ACAME support the demonstrations, as long as they are without ochlarchy. Sources: BBC and AIIS.
30.12.2017. Some anti-establishment protests happening in Iranian cities have turned violent, video footage shows. They began three days ago - initially in protest at falling living standards - and are the biggest show of dissent since huge pro-reform rallies in 2009. Demonstrators have ignored a warning by Iran's interior minister to avoid "illegal gatherings". Two demonstrators are reported dead in Dorud after sustaining gunshot wounds in a video posted on social media. Videos filmed elsewhere in the country show protesters setting fire to police vehicles and there are reports of attacks on government buildings, i.e. ochlarchy. The anarchists, the Anarchist International - AI/IFA and the Anarchist Confederation of Asia and the Middle East - ACAME condemn the ochlarchy, but supports the mainly peaceful protests. Sources: BBC and AIIS.
31.12.2017. Iran protests: Citizens have right to criticise, not destroy – Rouhani. Iranians are free to protest against the government but must not jeopardise security, President Hassan Rouhani has said after four days of demonstrations. Speaking at a cabinet session, he acknowledged that there were problems that needed to be solved but warned that violence would not be tolerated. The protests have been the biggest show of dissent since huge rallies in 2009. There have been clashes in several cities, and Iran has restricted social networks used to organize protests. The "temporary" restrictions on the apps Telegram and Instagram were imposed to "maintain tranquillity", state news agency Irib reports. The protests began in the north-east as an outcry against economic hardship and rising prices, but turned political in many places, with slogans chanted against Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Mr Rouhani and Iran's interventionist foreign policy in the region. Source: BBC.
01.01.2018. Iran unrest: 'Ten dead' in further protests overnight. New protests as Rouhani plays down violence. Ten people have been killed overnight in anti-government protests sweeping Iran, according to state TV. "In the events of last night, unfortunately a total of about 10 people were killed in several cities," it said. At least 12 people have now died since protests began on Thursday. On Monday 01.01.2017, President Hassan Rouhani said the protests and criticism were an opportunity, not a threat. He said the country should work together to fix its economic problems. Protests in Iran had continued overnight. Police used tear gas and water cannon to quell a rally in Tehran's Engheleb Square and demonstrations were reported in Kermanshah and Khorramabad in the west, Shahinshahr in the north-west and the northern city of Zanjan. Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli-Larijani called for a crackdown on "rioters" and "vandals" on Monday, according to state television. "Some individuals are exploiting the situation. This is wrong," he said. State TV said armed protesters had tried to take over some police stations and military bases, but faced serious resistance from security forces. Mr Rouhani has acknowledged popular grievances, though he warned that the government would show "no tolerance for those who damage public properties, violate public order and create unrest in the society". And Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has warned anti-government protesters they will face the nation's "iron fist" if political unrest continues. The IRGC is a powerful force with ties to the country's supreme leader, and is dedicated to preserving the country's Islamic system. Correspondents say it would be a significant escalation were they to become officially involved in policing the protests. Up to 400 people are reported to have been arrested in recent days, including 200 in Tehran on Saturday night. And authorities continue to sporadically suspend social media websites they fear will be used to organise protests, including Telegram and Instagram. State media have now begun broadcasting some footage on the protests, though focuses on young men attacking banks and vehicles or burning the Iranian flag, reported AFP news agency. On Sunday 31.12.2017 police used water cannon to disperse protesters at a major intersection, as captured in a video obtained by BBC Persian. There are reports of protests breaking out in Iran for a fifth day, despite a statement from the president that the unrest "is nothing". Anti-government chanting and burning cars were reported as night fell in the capital, Tehran, while police said an officer was killed in a central city. President Hassan Rouhani said protests were an "opportunity, not a threat" but vowed to crack down on "lawbreakers". Source: BBC.
02.01.2018. Nine more people killed in anti-government protests in Iran, according to state TV. At least 21 people have been killed in six days of protests - the biggest challenge to the Iranian leadership in nearly a decade. Nine more people, including an 11-year-old boy, have been killed as anti-government protests continued across Iran on Tuesday 02.01.2018. State TV says six rioters were killed in the town of Qahdarijan, during an attack on a police station. The clashes were sparked off as protesters tried to steal guns, according to reports. Two people, a 20-year-old man and a boy aged 11, died in the town of Khomeinishahr and a member of the Revolutionary Guards was killed in nearby Kahriz Sang. About 100 people were detained overnight in the region where most of the unrest was occurring, near the central city of Isfahan, according to state TV. Another 450 have been held over the last three days in the capital Tehran, according to the semi-official INLA. The anarchists, the Anarchist International - AI/IFA and the Anarchist Confederation of Asia and the Middle East - ACAME condemn the killings, i.e. severe (state-) ochlarchy, and call for implementation of human rights in Iran. Sources: Sky News and AIIS.
Iran protests: Supreme leader Khamenei blames 'enemies'. Iran's supreme leader has accused the country's enemies of stirring days of protests. In a post on his official website, Iran's supreme leader was quoted as saying: "In recent days, enemies of Iran used different tools including cash, weapons, politics and intelligence services to create troubles for the Islamic Republic." He said he would address the nation about the recent events "when the time was right". Analysts say the supreme leader's reference to "enemies" is a swipe at Israel, the US and regional rivals Saudi Arabia. Tasnim news quoted Ali Shamkhani, secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, as saying: "Saudis will receive Iran's unexpected response and they know how serious it can be." Musa Ghazanfarabadi, the head of Tehran's Revolutionary Court, in turn warned that the ringleaders of the protests would face harsh punishment. Source: BBC.
03.01.2018. Iran protests: General declares 'sedition' defeated. The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards has declared the defeat of the "sedition" in the country, referring to a wave of anti-government protests. Maj Gen Mohammad Ali Jafari made the announcement as tens of thousands of people attended pro-government rallies called to counter the unrest. Gen Jafari said: "Today, we can say that this is the end of the 96 sedition," referring to the current year - 1396 - in the Persian calendar. He said "security preparedness and people's vigilance" had led to the defeat of "enemies" and that the Guards had only intervened in a "limited" way in three provinces. He added: "There were a maximum of 1,500 people in each place and the number of troublemakers did not exceed 15,000 people nationwide." The general blamed anti-revolutionary agents, pro-monarchists and forces which he said had been "announced by [US-ex Secretary of State Hillary] Clinton to create riot, anarchy, insecurity and intrigue in Iran". The "enemies" had tried to pose "cultural, economic and security threats against Islamic Iran", he said. His comments echoed those by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Tuesday, which also blamed unspecified "enemies" and which analysts believed referred to the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia. But the general also blamed a "former official" for the protests, in a comment analysts believe referred to ex-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has been critical of government officials, in particular Judiciary Chief Sadegh Amoli Larijani, in recent weeks. State television broadcast some of the pro-government rallies live. Among those holding events were the cities of Kermanshah, Ilam and Gorgan. Some marchers carried Iranian flags and images of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. In the city of Qom, marchers chanted "death to American mercenaries". Chants elsewhere included "the blood in our veins is a gift to our leader" and "the seditionist rioters should be executed".
Are protests still going on? Reuters news agency is reporting fresh protests after nightfall on Wednesday in the city of Malayer in western Hamadan province, with protesters chanting: "People are begging, the supreme leader is acting like God!" Video on social media showed protesters in Nowshahr in the north chanting "death to the dictator", a phrase that has been used against Ayatollah Khamenei, the agency reported. Another video showed a building burning in Gohardasht. Associated Press said other video had emerged on Wednesday of protesters tearing down images of the ayatollah in Noor Abad, 360km (225 miles) south-west of Tehran, although it was unclear when the footage was shot. Meanwhile three members of the security services have been killed in Piranshahr, an area in West Azerbaijan province which borders Iraqi Kurdistan, according to a statement by the Revolutionary Guards. However, the area occasionally sees clashes with Kurdish separatists based in Iraq, and the attack is not thought to be linked to the recent protests.
President Donald Trump has tweeted regularly in support of the protesters and did so again on Wednesday 03.01.2018 morning. "Such respect for the people of Iran as they try to take back their corrupt government. You will see great support from the United States at the appropriate time!" On Tuesday, US envoy to the UN Nikki Haley branded as "complete nonsense" Iran's suggestion that external enemies were fomenting the unrest. She said: "The people of Iran are crying out for freedom. All freedom-loving people must stand with their cause." Mr Trump must decide by mid-January whether to re-impose sanctions that were eased when world powers struck a deal with Iran in 2015 that curbed its nuclear programme. The US president has regularly called the agreement a bad deal. Source: BBC.
04.01.2018. The situation in Iran - Anarchist point of view. The suppression of protests in Iran this week, with the tragic deaths of more than 20 people and the arrest of several hundred, will do nothing to resolve the underlying social and economic discontent across the country. Anger over youth unemployment, as high as 60% in some areas, spiralling inflation and the continued decline in real incomes is being fuelled by resentment at Iran’s role in military conflicts abroad -- while the domestic economy is failing. The modest increase in GDP after the lifting of nuclear sanctions in 2015 has not lifted living standards for the majority of the people seen as a class as opposed to the superiors in rank and/or income. And the vast social and economic influence of the republican guard and of religious bodies are major barriers to a libertarian development. Non-payment of wages, one of the causes of the protests, is impoverishing many workers, such as at the Haft Tapeh sugar production complex, where workers have gone for 4 months without pay after a dubious privatisation of the facility. Workers involved in independent labour confederation activity face severe repression, including imprisonment on false charges such as the cases of Reza Shahabi, Esmail Abdi, Ebrahim Madadi and many others. Democratisation, including gender equality and respect for freedom of association, assembly and speech are the basis on which real social justice can be achieved. Unravelling the military’s domination of the economy and the power of fundamentalist clerics over everyday life are crucial to the prospects of shared prosperity and economic security. The people of Iran desperately need investment in jobs and decent incomes. At the international level, dialogue was vital in forestalling Iran’s nuclear weapons programme, and all countries should stand ready to engage constructively in a democratisation agenda. Real democracy is anarchy – and anarchy is real democracy. For a development towards anarchy in Iran. Resolution by the Anarchist International - AI/IFA and the Anarchist Confederation of Asia and the Middle East - ACAME .
02.02.2018. Police in the Iranian capital, Tehran, have arrested 29 people for their involvement in protests against the country's compulsory headscarf law. Women across Iran have been removing their headscarves in public to protest Iran's strict Islamic dress code. Videos and photos shared on social media have shown demonstrators standing on utility boxes on street sidewalks, defiantly waving their hijabs. Tehran police suggested that their actions were incited by foreigners, saying those arrested were "deceived" into removing their hijabs, Iran's semiofficial Tasnim News Agency reported. The 29 protesters been transferred to judicial authorities, the report said. Masih Alinejad, the Iranian activist behind the "White Wednesday" social media campaign against mandatory hijabs, who is now based in the US, told CNN that the movement has not been influenced from abroad. Source: CNN.
13.03.2018. INTERNATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFEDERATION - ITUC OnLine: Iran: Authorities Step up Anti-Union Repression, as Journalists Seek Protection and Women Demand Rights. The ITUC is alarmed at reports from Iran of further attacks on and detention of workers for engaging in trade union activity, with security forces conducting night-time raids on the homes of 10 steelworkers earlier this month <http://www.industriall-union.org/iran-10-detained-after-protests-over-unpaid-wages-of-4000-steel-workers>, and further action against trade unionists from other sectors as well as people who participated in protests in January. The ITUC has been informed that the steelworkers, from the National Steel complex of Ahvaz, were held in detention for several days. They and their colleagues took strike action after not being paid for three months.
On 5 March, Mohammad Habibi, Secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Federation, was arrested in his classroom in front of his students. Security forces assaulted him using pepper spray, took him in handcuffs to his house which they searched, then removed him to Evin prison where other trade unionists are already in detention. Workers at the Haft Tapeh sugar complex, who had not been paid for six months, have finally received payment after a long campaign during which protesting workers faced severe repression. "Non-payment of wages is a major problem in Iran. Even after the lifting of international sanctions, economic mismanagement is rife, due in large measure to the pervasive hold that the Iranian military has on the economy, and the influence of arch-conservative clerics. Working people and their families are paying the price," said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow.
In an unprecedented move, the BBC, supported by the International Federation of Journalists https://www.irishnews.com/news/uknews/2018/03/12/news/bbc-to-appeal-to-un-over-persecution-of-its-journalists-by-iran-1275746/ has appealed to the UN Human Rights Council over intimidation of families of London-based journalists working for the broadcaster's Persian Service, pointing to threats, travel bans, and arrests of family members of the BBC journalists inside Iran http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-43334401.
Dozens of Iranian women who have protested against compulsory clothing rules have been arrested and face serious charges, while on 1 March more than 30 young women who tried to join male-only crowds for a major football match at the Azadi Stadium were detained, in violation of FIFA's statutes and its human rights policy which forbid discrimination including on the basis of gender. Iran is the only team that qualified for the men's World Cup in Russia which bans women from watching men's matches.
"People from across Iranian society are suffering from the repression, and it is on the increase as hardline conservatives and the military seek to maintain power and influence, to the detriment of the people, and to the country's already poor international reputation," said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow. The ITUC represents 207 million members of 331 affiliates in 163 countries and territories.
08.05.2018. Iran nuclear deal: Trump pulls US out. US President Donald Trump says he will withdraw the US from an Obama-era nuclear agreement with Iran. Calling it "decaying and rotten", he said the deal was "an embarrassment" to him "as a citizen". He said he would reimpose economic sanctions that were waived when the deal was signed in 2015. The move goes against advice from his European allies and some military advisers. In a statement, France, Germany and the UK - who are also signatories to the deal - have said they "regret" the American decision. The European Union's top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, said the EU was "determined to preserve" the deal. But Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he "fully supports" Mr Trump's "bold" withdrawal from a "disastrous" deal. And the US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said the president had "absolutely made the right decision". "This was a terrible deal that only allowed Iran's bad international conduct to worsen," she said. Mr Trump had previously complained that the deal only limited Iran's nuclear activities for a fixed period; had failed to stop the development of ballistic missiles; and had handed Iran a $100bn (£74bn) windfall that it used "as a slush fund for weapons, terror, and oppression" across the Middle East. The deal was agreed between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the US, UK, France, China and Russia - plus Germany. The so-called Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) saw Iran agree to limit the size of its stockpile of enriched uranium - which is used to make reactor fuel, but also nuclear weapons - for 15 years and the number of centrifuges installed to enrich uranium for 10 years. Iran also agreed to modify a heavy water facility so it could not produce plutonium suitable for a bomb. In return, sanctions imposed by the UN, US and EU that had crippled Iran's economy were lifted. Iran insists its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful, and its compliance with the deal has been verified by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Source: BBC.
09.05.2018. ‘Death to America’: Iran MPs burn American flag in parliament. Iranian lawmakers outraged over US President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the 2015 international nuclear deal set alight a paper US flag on the parliament floor. The MPs staged the demonstration on Wednesday morning, the day after Trump's announcement, and chanted "Death to America". Iran's parliament speaker, Ali Larijani, said: "If Europe and important countries like Russia and China fill this international vacuum (in the deal), perhaps there will be a way to continue. Otherwise, the Islamic Republic of Iran will bring them (US) to their senses with its nuclear actions." "They have to know that under such circumstances, Iran has no commitment to remain in the nuclear position it was in before." Trump's decision to ditch the "decaying and rotten" nuclear deal prompted the UK, France, and Germany to issue a joint statement, emphasising their "continuing commitment" to the agreement. Iran responded by saying it was ordering preparations for uranium enrichment. During a state television interview on Wednesday, Ali Larijani said: "Trump's abandoning of the nuclear deal was a diplomatic show ... Iran has no obligation to honour its commitments under the current situation ... It is a threat to peace and security ... I am not sure whether the European signatories of the deal will fulfill their promises." Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has addressed US President Donald Trump directly, telling him he "made a mistake" in deciding to leave a multi-country nuclear deal. Mr Khamenei said: "I said from the first day: don't trust America." He urged his government to get guarantees from European powers before agreeing to continue with the deal. Saudi Arabia, a regional rival of Iran and longtime US ally, said that it supports Trump's decision. "The kingdom supports and welcomes the steps announced by the US president toward withdrawing from the nuclear deal ... and reinstating economic sanctions against Iran," the Saudi foreign ministry said. Riyadh's allies in the Gulf - the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain - also welcomed Trump's decision. Sources: Euronews, BBC and Al Jazeera.
10.05.2018. Israel strikes Iranian targets in Syria in response to rocket fire. Israel says it has struck almost all of Iran's military infrastructure inside Syria in its biggest assault since the start of the civil war there. The strikes came after 20 rockets were fired at Israeli military positions in the occupied Golan Heights overnight. Syria's military said the Israeli "aggression" had killed three people. There was no immediate comment from Iran, whose deployment of troops to Syria to help President Bashar al-Assad has alarmed Israel. Iran has repeatedly called for an end to the existence of the Jewish state. Russia, Germany and France called on both countries to exercise restraint, but the US said Iran bore "full responsibility for the consequences of its reckless actions" and that Israel had a right to defend itself. Source: BBC.
25.06.2018. Protesters angered by Iran's cratering economy confronted police in front of Parliament on Monday 25.06.2018, with security forces firing tear gas, according to online videos, the first such confrontation after similar demonstrations rocked the country at the start of the year. Source: Euronews.
06.08.2018. The United States said Monday 06.08.2018 it was reimposing economic sanctions against Iran that were lifted under a 2015 nuclear accord, ratcheting up pressure on Tehran but also worsening relations with European allies. The sanctions are a consequence of President Trump’s decision in May to withdraw from an international deal that sought to limit Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for easing pressure on the country’s shaky economy. The Trump administration is betting that backing out of it will force Iran to shut down its nuclear enrichment efforts, curb its weapons program and end its support of brutal governments or uprisings in the Middle East. Source: NY-Times.
22.09.2018. Iran military parade attacked by gunmen in Ahvaz. Gunmen have opened fire on an Iranian military parade in the south-western city of Ahvaz, killing at least 25 people, including civilians, and injuring 60, state media say. The attackers shot from a park near the parade and were wearing military uniforms, reports say. An anti-government Arab group, Ahvaz National Resistance, and Islamic State (IS) have both claimed the attack. President Hassan Rouhani has vowed a "harsh response". "The response of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the smallest threat will be harsh, but those who sponsor the terrorists must be held accountable," he said in a statement. Foreign Minister Javad Zarif blamed "terrorists paid by a foreign regime", adding that "Iran holds regional terror sponsors and their US masters accountable". Iran has previously accused its regional rival, Saudi Arabia, of supporting separatist activity amongst Iran's Arab minority. Meanwhile, an Iranian military spokesman claimed the attackers were not from IS but "were trained and organised by two Gulf countries", and had ties to the US and Israel. Update 23.09.2018. According to Reuters, the IS news agency Amaq has posted a video of three men purportedly on their way to carry out the shooting, with one saying they were targeting non-believers. Source: BBC.
05.11.2018. Iran sanctions: Rouhani defiant as US re-imposes measures. Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has vowed to "break" swingeing sanctions re-imposed by the US targeting core parts of the economy. The Trump administration is restoring all sanctions lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal in a bid to pressure Iran. They will hit oil exports, shipping and banks, and make it difficult to do business with the oil-rich nation. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Iran must "act like a normal country, or see its economy crumble". He told a press conference on Monday 05.11.2018 that more than 20 nations have already cut their oil intake from the Islamic Republic, and that exports have fallen by a million barrels a day. Mr Rouhani earlier struck a defiant tone, saying Iran would "continue selling oil". "We will proudly break the sanctions," he told a meeting of economic officials. European countries which are still party to the accord designed to curb Iran's nuclear activity say they will help businesses bypass the sanctions. But there are doubts about how successful this will be. Even before the US sanctions were re-imposed, Iran's economy had had a difficult year, with Iran's currency, the rial, plummeting against the dollar, driving up the price of basic goods. Source: BBC.
13.02.2019. Suicide attack kills 27 members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard. Deadly attack took place near the Pakistan border where armed groups and drug smugglers operate. The Jaish al-Adl (Army of Justice) armed group claimed responsibility for the attack, according to Fars. Source: Al Jazeera.
08.04.2019. Trump designates elite Iranian military force as a terrorist organization. President Donald Trump announced Monday 08.04.2019 the US will formally designate Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a Foreign Terrorist Organization, a move some in the administration had opposed over concerns about potential risks to US troops in the Middle East. The step "recognizes the reality that Iran is not only a State Sponsor of Terrorism, but that the IRGC actively participates in, finances, and promotes terrorism as a tool of statecraft," Trump said in a statement that described the IRGC as "the Iranian government's primary means of directing and implementing its global terrorist campaign." Administration officials said the move is a response to Iran's destabilizing behavior across the Middle East, including support for the regime in Syria, Houthi rebels in Yemen and Hezbollah in Lebanon, as well as for assassination plots in Europe and the US. The announcement aims to drive a stake through the heart of a central institution in Iran. Formed after the Islamic revolution in 1979, the IRGC is not only Iran's most powerful military institution, it holds deep influence over domestic politics and the economy, with interests extending to and beyond the construction, telecommunications, auto and energy industries. Iran responds. Iran's Supreme National Security Council responded Monday 08.04.2019 by declaring the US a "state sponsor of terrorism" and American troops operating in the region as "terrorist groups," according to IRNA, Iran's state-run news agency. "The Islamic Republic of Iran declares itself in reciprocity against the unlawful and unreasonable action of the United States today, considering the United States as a terrorist sponsored government and the Central Command of the United States, CENTCOM, and all its affiliated forces as terrorist groups," the National Security Council of the Islamic Republic of Iran said in a statement, IRNA reported. The IRGC designation marks the first time that the United States has ever named a part of another government as a foreign terrorist organization. Source: CNN.
23.04.2019. Iran's parliament approves bill labelling US army as 'terrorist'. Move comes after US said that no country would any longer be exempt from sanctions if it continues to buy Iranian oil. Source: Al Jazeera.
02.07.2019. World leaders react with worry to Iran's breach of nuclear deal. European and world leaders reacted with worry after Iran announced on Monday that it had accumulated more enriched uranium that permitted under its nuclear deal. "Iran is playing with fire", US president Donald Trump said on Monday night. The White House said that the U.S. policy of maximum pressure on Iran will continue until it changes course and added that Iran should be held to a standard of no uranium enrichment. "Maximum pressure on the Iranian regime will continue until its leaders alter their course of action," the White House said. "We must restore the longstanding nonproliferation standard of no enrichment for Iran." "We want to preserve that deal because we don’t want Iran to have nuclear weapons but if Iran breaks that deal then we are out of it as well," British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt said. Hunt is one of two contenders to replace Theresa May as prime minister. He told Sky News that Britain still supported the deal.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Iran's move to break limits on its stockpile of low-enriched uranium was a "significant step toward making a nuclear weapon". Last year, Netanyahu presented what he said was a secret Iranian nuclear archive proving that Tehran had lied about pursuing nuclear arms. Speaking in Jerusalem, he said more evidence showing that Iran "lied the entire time" would be exposed soon. Netanyahu also called upon European countries to "stand by your commitments" to impose sanctions against Iran if it violated the nuclear agreement reached with world powers in 2015. "I tell you: Do so, go do it. Do it. Just do it," he said. A UN spokesperson said UN chief Antonio Guterres is concerned by reports that Iran had surpassed the limits on its low enriched uranium stockpile set in the nuclear agreement reached in 2015 known as the JCPOA adding that such actions “would not help preserve the Plan nor secure the tangible economic benefit for the Iranian people.”
Iran said its accumulation of more enriched uranium than permitted under its nuclear deal with world powers was not a violation of the pact, since it was exercising its right to respond to the U.S. withdrawal from the agreement last year. "We have NOT violated the JCPOA," Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote on Twitter, referring to the nuclear deal by its formal title, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). "Para 36 of the accord illustrates why. We triggered & exhausted para 36 after US withdrawal. We gave E3+2 a few weeks while reserving our right. We finally took action after 60 weeks. As soon as E3 abide by their obligations, we'll reverse." Zarif tweeted the message along with the text of paragraph 36 of the JCPOA which provides a mechanism to resolve disputes when parties believe other signatories are not fulfilling their obligations. The E3 refers to Germany, Britain and France, while the E3+2 also includes Russia and China. Source: Euronews.
Please send your protest letters to:
Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street
Shahid Keshvar Doust Street
The Head of the Judiciary
Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Pasteur St.,Vali Asr Ave.,
south of Serah-e Jomhouri,
Committee for the Freedom of Political Prisoners in Iran- email@example.com
Against Discrimination; Organization for the Defense of Women's Rights- firstname.lastname@example.org
International Federation of Iranian Refugees- email@example.com
International Committee against Execution- firstname.lastname@example.org
A list of some of the detained students:
1- Milad Moyini (Mazandaran University) 2- Behrang Zandi (Mazandaran University) 3- Hamed Mohammadi (Mazandaran University) 4- Arash Pakzad (Mazandaran University) 5- Hasan Maarefi (Mazandaran University) 6- Anooshe Azadfar (Tehran University) 7- Ilnaz Jamshidi (Communications, Azad University, Central Tehran) 8- Mehdi Gerayloo (Geophysics, Tehran) 9- Nader Ehsani (Mazandaran University) 10-Sayid Habibi (ex-member of the Central Council of Advare Tahkime Vahdat) 11- Behrooz Karimi-zade (Tehran University) 12- Keyvan Amiri Elyasi (Masters, Industry, Sharif Technical University) 13- Nasim Soltan Beygi (Communications faculty, Allameh University) 14- Ali Salem (Masters of Polymers – Polytechnic University) 15- Mohsen Ghamin (Polytechnic University) 16- Roozbeh Saf-Shekan (Tehran University) 17- Roozbehan Amiri (Computer Science, Tehran University) 18-Yaser Pir Hayati (Shahed University) 19- Mahsa Mohebbi 20- Okhtay Hosseni (Azad University) 21- Sayid Agham Ali Khalili (Allameh University) 22- Behzad Bagheri (Tehran University) 23- Ali Kalayi 24- Amir Mehrzad 25- Hadi Salari (Rajaee University) 26- Farshid Farhadi Ahangaran (Rajaee University) 27- Amir Aghayi (Rajaee University) 28- Milad Omrani 29- Soroosh Hashempoor (Chamran University) and 30-Yoones Mirhossein (Student of Shiraz University) 31- Parsa Kermanjian (Kermanshah University) 32-Abed Tavanche 33- Reza Arab (Mazandaran University) 34- Sadra Pirhayaty(Shahed University) 35-Peyman Piran 36- Majid Ashrafnejad (Rajaee University) 37- Shovan Merikhi (Mazandaran University) 38- Sara Khademi (Mazandaran University) 39- Nima Nahvi (Mazandaran University) 40- Mohammad Saleh Ayuman (Tehran Univercity) 41- Sohrab Karimi (Tehran Univercity) 42- Farshad Dustipoor (Tehran Univercity) 43- Javad Alizadeh (Tehran Univercity).
Liberación de los presos políticos en Irán! Acabar con el régimen fascista!
(Translated to Spanish by CNT-AIT-SAGUNTO)
Irán es un país totalitario fascista con aproximadamente 71,1% autoritarios grado, y aproximadamente 28,9% libertaria grado. Se clasifican como no 102 de los países de acuerdo al grado libertario, véase http://www.anarchy.no/ranking.html. Con un índice de Gini de 43,0 es más capitalista de los EE.UU., con un índice de Gini de 40,8. El grado de capitalismo en el Irán se estima en aproximadamente 76,5% y el grado de estatismo se estima en aproximadamente 65,3%. Por lo tanto, el grado de socialismo es sólo aproximadamente 23,5% y el grado de autonomía es sólo aproximadamente 34,7%. El sistema económico - político de Irán se encuentra en el sector de la derecha fascista del cuadrante del fascismo en el plano económico - poltical mapa, ver http://www.anarchy.no/a_e_p_m.html. Se trata de una dictadura, con el artículo por fundamentalistas sacerdotes, es decir, jerarquía. El fascismo de Irán tiene una fea cara ultra autoritario:
Como debe ser informada, en un ataque preventivo contra las organizaciones estudiantiles independientes régimen islámico en Irán detuvo a decenas de estudiantes políticamente activos antes del Día de los Estudiantes (diciembre 7), prácticamente de un día de protesta contra el status quo durante décadas de estudiante Luchas. Sin embargo, a pesar de los arrestos dijo, los estudiantes celebraron su día a la celebración de acciones de protesta en diferentes formas a nivel nacional. En el curso de esas acciones se detuvo a más estudiantes. En la actualidad hay unos cuarenta estudiantes activistas de distintas partes del país detenidos en la famosa prisión de Evin, en Teherán, así como en otros lugares conocidos y desconocidos. Los estudiantes detenidos han sido sometidos a torturas y tratos crueles. Las noticias de la tortura ha alarmado profundamente a sus familias y el pueblo en general. Las falsas acusaciones presentadas contra los estudiantes han agravado la preocupación generalizada por su vida. Entre otras cosas, el Ministerio de Inteligencia ha lanzado un comunicado en lo que respecta a los estudiantes de izquierda libertaria y afirmando que "los alborotadores ya había obtenido china", recogido rocas, y se sónica granadas de mano "o" los detenidos fueron encontrados en posesión de una cantidad considerable De las bebidas alcohólicas, inmoral literatura, libros heréticos, y volantes con contenido sacrílego ".
Además, la estatal de noticias - Raja sitio web ha publicado informes afirman ", tras extensas investigaciones de alcance nacional de las universidades, el núcleo de células comunistas, las conexiones con el extranjero (léase: las conexiones con las organizaciones de oposición el extranjero), ha sido descubierto y arrestado. Dicha célula comunista trazado para elevar disturbios en las universidades de diciembre el 7 º a través de provocaciones violentas, utilizando artefactos incendiarios como cócteles molotov y granadas de mano ... Etc "El falso y fabricado naturaleza de tales informes es evidente para todos. Sin embargo, estas acusaciones son pesados utilizados por el régimen en toda sus 30 años de existencia a la línea de miles de personas que buscan la libertad en contra de sus escuadrones de fuego. Hoy, recurre a las mismas acusaciones contra los estudiantes. Esto tiene, naturalmente, causó graves preocupaciones para la vida de los estudiantes entre los detenidos de sus familias y el pueblo en general. Simplemente tenemos que acabar con esta conspiración del régimen libre de la prisión y los estudiantes por medio de nuestra solidaridad internacional.
Existe en la actualidad un gran movimiento de protesta en marcha para la liberación de los estudiantes de la familia, la universidad, y las ciudades en diversas partes del país. Sin embargo, lo que se necesita para un poderoso luchar por su liberación inmediata e incondicional, así como la liberación de todos los demás presos políticos en Irán, es un largo de la solidaridad mundial. Nosotros, por lo tanto, un llamamiento a todas las personas, instituciones y organizaciones de defensa de los derechos humanos a unirse a nuestra campaña internacional para la liberación de los detenidos recientemente, los estudiantes y todos los demás presos políticos que languidecen en las mazmorras del régimen islámico en Irán. También cabe señalar aquí que, además de los estudiantes detenidos un gran número de activistas laborales, entre los cuales el internacionalmente conocido Mahmud Saalehi, Mansur Osaanlou y Ebraahim Madadi - así como decenas de mujeres que se han opuesto a la del régimen actual ola de masa Intimidación con el pretexto de la aplicación de su Hijab islámico y otros códigos están en la cárcel.
Una demanda inmediata de la población iraní, en oposición a las autoridades, es la liberación incondicional de los recientemente detenidos los estudiantes, así como a todos los demás presos políticos. Prestarles su amplio apoyo internacional para que puedan abrir las puertas de las cárceles en libertad de sus presos políticos y tener su justa lucha contra el bárbaro régimen islámico un paso más.
Por favor, envíe sus cartas de protesta a:
Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei
La Oficina del Líder Supremo
República Islámica Street
Shahid Keshvar Doust Street
El Jefe de la Judicatura
Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Oficina del Jefe de la Judicatura
Pasteur St, Vali Asr Ave.,
Al sur de Serah -e Jomhouri,
Comité para la Libertad de los Presos Políticos en el Irán - B.mehrabadi @ gmail.com
Contra la discriminación; Organización para la Defensa de los Derechos de la Mujer - email@example.com
Federación Internacional de Refugiados Iraníes - firstname.lastname@example.org
Comité Internacional contra la ejecución de email@example.com
Una lista de algunos de los estudiantes detenidos:
1 - Milad Moyini (Mazandaran University) 2 - Behrang Zandi (Mazandaran University) 3 - Hamed Mohammadi (Mazandaran University) 4 - Arash Pakzad (Mazandaran University) 5 - Hasan Maarefi (Mazandaran University) 6 - Anooshe Azadfar (Universidad de Teherán) 7 - Ilnaz Jamshidi (Comunicaciones, Universidad Azad, en el centro de Teherán) 8 - Mehdi Gerayloo (Geofísica, Teherán) 9 - Nader Ehsani (Mazandaran University) 10 - Sayid Habibi (ex miembro del Consejo Central de Advare Tahkime Vahdat) 11 - Behrooz Karimi - Zade (Universidad de Teherán) 12 - Keyvan Amiri Elyasi (Masters, la Industria, la Universidad Técnica de Sharif) 13 - Nasim Soltan Beygi (Facultad de Comunicaciones, Universidad Allameh) 14 - Ali Salem (Masters de Polímeros de la Universidad Politécnica) 15 - Mohsen Ghamin (Universidad Politécnica ) 16 - Roozbeh Saf - Shekan (Universidad de Teherán) 17 - Roozbehan Amiri (Computer Science, Universidad de Teherán) 18 - Yaser Pir Hayati (Shahed University) 19 - Mahsa Mohebbi 20 - Okhtay Hosseni (Azad University) 21 - Sayid Agham Ali Khalili ( Universidad Allameh) 22 - Behzad Bagheri (Universidad de Teherán) 23 - Ali Kalayi 24 - Amir Mehrzad 25 - Hadi Salari (Rajaee University) 26 - Farshid Farhadi Ahangaran (Rajaee University) 27 - Amir Aghayi (Rajaee University) 28 - Milad Omrani 29 - Soroosh Hashempoor (Chamran Universidad) y 30 - Yoones Mirhossein (Estudiantes de la Universidad de Shiraz) 31 - Parsa Kermanjian (Kermanshah University) 32 - Abed Tavanche 33 - Reza Árabe (Mazandaran University) 34 - Sadra Pirhayaty (Shahed University) 35 - Peyman Piran 36 - Majid Ashrafnejad (Rajaee University) 37 - Shovan Merikhi (Mazandaran University) 38 - Sara Khademi (Mazandaran University) 39 - Nima Nahvi (Mazandaran University) 40 - Mohammad Saleh Ayuman (universidad de Teherán) 41 - Sohrab Karimi (universidad de Teherán) 42 - Farshad Dustipoor (universidad de Teherán) 43 - Javad Alizadeh (universidad de Teherán)
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