Wednesday, 12 December 2012

The Latest from Iran (12 December): A 78-Year-Old Academic is Imprisoned for Writing the Supreme Leader

Mohammad Maleki0428 GMT: The Battle Within. Javan Online, linked to the Revolutionary Guards, continues its campaign against the possible candidacy in the 2013 Presidency election of President Ahmadinejad's right-hand man, Esfandiar Rahim Mashai --- referred to as “the leader of the deviant current”.

Javan alleges that Rahim-Mashai will use his new appointment by Ahmadinejad as head of the secretariat of the Non-Aligned Movement to confer with foreign officials. It then links him to unnamed reformist foes: “It is noteworthy that undertaking trips abroad for attracting financial and spiritual support from foreign authorities in elections, was previously undertaken by some Reformist personalities.”

0423 GMT: Foreign Affairs Watch (Afghan Front). Deputy Foreign Minister Hassan Qashqavi has denied Tuesday's reports that the Iranian Consulate in Herat in western Afghanistan has been closed amid protests by locals.

Last week, the consulate was surrounded by demonstrators claiming the killing of 13 Afghan nationals by Iranian security forces as they were attempted to cross the border into the Islamic Republic.

0415 GMT: Sanctions Watch. Canada has expanded its sanctions against the Islamic Republic, listing an additional 98 persons and groups for supporting Iran’s nuclear program.

The measures target economic sectors such as oil and gas, mining, metals, and shipping, as well as seeking the isolation of Iran's financial system.

0357 GMT: Last week our partner Arseh Sevom, the NGO promoting civil society in Iran, reported on the open letter written by Dr Mohammad Maleki, the former Chancellor of Tehran University, to the Supreme Leader.

Maleki urged Ayatollah Khamenei “to accept that Iran is at the verge of collapse”.  Instead of relying on the praise in the image of Iran portrayed by his supporters, Ayatollah Khamenei should see the domestic pressures, disagreements between the three powers of Government, the effects of economic sanctions, and the dissatisfaction of the population.

Maleki went even farther in attributing personal responsibility to the Leader for the problems, citing Khamenei’s mismanagement and poor decision-making and urging his resignation, with a free and fair referendum about the state of the country.

Yesterday Mohammad Maleki was summoned to Evin Prison, as his house was searched by security forces, to serve six years of prison sentences imposed on him 

The 78-year-old Maleki, the first post-Revolution Chancellor of Tehran University, has been detained on numerous occasions for his activism. He was arrested in August 2009, soon after the disputed Presidential election, and charged with  "contact with unspecified foreign groups and working to undermine the Islamic system". Reportedly suffering from poor health, he was released on bail in March 2010.

from EA WorldView: EA Iran

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