Iran accuses opposition chiefs of treason
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Last Updated: Thursday, February 17, 2011, 23:31
  
Tehran: Iran on Thursday accused two opposition leaders of treason and vowed to block their ability to communicate with their supporters on the eve of a pro-regime "hatred" rally against them in Tehran.

The leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, are under de facto house arrest but have regularly issued defiant messages to their supporters through their websites, including one which led to anti-government protests on Monday that left two people dead and several wounded.

The protests angered regime-backers and furious lawmakers demanded the execution of the pair, who were once pillars of the Islamic establishment.

Tehran: Iran on Thursday accused two opposition leaders of treason and vowed to block their ability to communicate with their supporters on the eve of a pro-regime "hatred" rally against them in Tehran.

The leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, are under de facto house arrest but have regularly issued defiant messages to their supporters through their websites, including one which led to anti-government protests on Monday that left two people dead and several wounded.

The protests angered regime-backers and furious lawmakers demanded the execution of the pair, who were once pillars of the Islamic establishment.

"They (the people) should be certain that we will block the mechanism through which the sedition leaders issue their statements," he said, urging people to be patient and vigilant.

Mousavi and Karroubi have regularly issued anti-government statements on their respective websites and had called for a rally in support of Arab uprisings.

Heeding the call, thousands of their supporters took to Tehran streets on Monday and turned the gathering into a fresh anti-government demonstration which led to clashes with security forces and militiamen.

In the unrest two people were killed and several others wounded, including nine members of security forces, officials and opposition websites reported.

Similar but deadlier opposition protests that lasted several months in the wake of the the June 2009 disputed presidential election shook the pillars of Iran's Islamic regime and divided its elite clergy.

Dozens of people were killed, scores wounded and thousands arrested when authorities cracked down on those protesters, leading them to adopt, until Monday, a much lower profile.

PTI


First Published: Thursday, February 17, 2011, 23:31


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