Iranian government retreats before opposition: experts

Azerbaijan, Baku, July 31 / Trend , T.Konyaeva /

Appeal of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to the Ministry of Justice in connection with the discharge of 140 people detained during the protests against the results of presidential elections, as well as the decision by the Supreme Leader of Iran Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to close the Kyahrizyak prison show that the government retreats before the opposition. Experts consider that these steps are not satisfactory.

Alex Vatanka, IHS Jane's Security Editor, thinks that Khamenei and Ahmadinejad retreated before the opposition, but this does not justify the crimes committed after the presidential election.

On July 28, Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei decided to close the Kyahrizyak prison. Part of the participants of protest against the results of presidential elections is detained in this prison, BBC reported on the same day. Khamenei's decision was made after death of the son of assistant of presidential candidate Mohsun Rezaee Mohsun Ruhulamin and others in the prison under unclear circumstances. In his turn, on July 30 Ahmadinejad sent a letter to the Ministry of Justice, with a requested to discharge 140 prisoners.

Several inmates in the prison were killed in unknown circumstances, Vatanka told Trend by telephone from Washington. "One of those killed is the son of one of the former Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) commanders, and this information gave rise to public concerns about the situation in the Kyahrizyak prison," said Vatanka.

According to the expert, the cause of protest actions against the election results is Khamenei himself. Supporting Ahmadinejad, he did not act as the supreme leader, but openly demonstrated his position. American expert considers that the opposition is now more powerful and the protest actions have also become more powerful. "Therefore, Khamenei intends to restore the lost image of neutral supreme leader," he said.

After the elections, presidential candidates Mehdi Karroubi, Mir Hussein Mousavi and Mohsun Rezaee stated mass falsifications during the elections. Some 20 people were killed as a result of protests demanding the liquidation of the results of presidential elections in Tehran and other cities. The Reporters Without Borders claims the number of deaths is higher than the official data, and 2,000 people were arrested.

Iranian expert Ali Rza Nurizadeh, who works in London, considers that the inmates in Kyahrizyak prison were transferred to the prison of Isfahan city and to Evin prison, which is located in Tehran. Letter by the President about discharging 140 prisoners will not change anything. "Currently more than 100 politicians and 2,000 participants of the actions are in prison and discharging 140 prisoners will not change anything," Nurizadeh said by telephone from London.

Part of those coming together at the grave of Neda Aga Sultan, who was killed during protests, was arrested on 30 July. Among those arrested three were two journalists.

After the elections, about 50 journalists were arrested, and currently at least 25 of them are in prison, Secretary General of Association of Iranian Journalists Badrassadat Mufidi told Trend . Currently, over 40 former officials, known persons and activists are in jail, BBC reported.

According to experts, if Khamenei intends to restore the image religious leader, he must take greater steps.

Officials responsible for the deaths of civilians killed in Kyahrizyak, other prisons and during the protests must be brought to court, and the perpetrators in falsification of elections should be punished, said Nurizadeh.

Khamenei plays a big role in events in Iran and is responsible for all violence, said Vatanka.

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