Opposition supporters to be named and shamed

2009/12/31

Published on German public television channel ARD, news broadcast “Tagesschau”, December 31 2009
Source (German): http://www.tagesschau.de/ausland/iran1004.html

Violent clashes between opposition and security forces continue in Iran. The police used tear gas. Meanwhile, the police published 100 photos of the street fights, calling on citizens to report the names of the protesters.

Citizens are asked to provide the authorities with names of participants in the protests against the government. (photo: dpa)

by Ulrich Pick, ARD radio studio Istanbul

In the afternoon, several places in Tehran have seen renewed unrest. Opposition websites report clashes between supporters of the opposition and security forces to have taken place in Haft-e Tir Square in the center as well as in Southern Tehran at the grave of the nephew of the opposition leader, Ali Moussavi, who had been shot dead. Moreover, tensions are said to have occurred in several universities. The police used tear gas.

Prosecutor threatens to take legal actions against opposition
In the morning, hardliners had reiterated their warning that the opposition must quit their dissident activities. Prosecutor Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejeie threatened to take legal actions against the opposition leaders for supporting enemies of God. Ultra conservatives in the country describe those who protested against the system last Sunday during the Shiite festival of Ashura as “Mohareb” – enemies of God. According to Iranian law, these people are apostates and therefore can be sentenced to death. Ebrahim Raisi, chief of the Judiciary, in this context told the official Iranian news agency IRNA that those who were arrested last weekend could as well be charged with being “Mohareb”.

Publishing photos of protesters
Yesterday, police chief Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam mentioned that more than 500 people were arrested in the protests. Previously, security forces hat spoken of only 300 arrests. Moghaddam substantiated the increased figures saying that the Intelligence and the Basij volunteer corps had as well arrested people and detained them in their own facilities. Meanwhile, the opposition speaks of at least 800 arrests.

At least 18 aides to Moussavi are said to be among the arrested. The Iranian police on their website published around 100 photos of participants in Sunday’s street fights. It is claimed that they have destroyed police property, which is why the authorities called on the population to assist in their identification.

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