Iran Election Update: Concerns for Violence Against Moussavi Supporters Grow
Moussavi Campaign Says Interior Ministry Had Notified Them He Has Won the Elections
· Issues Statement Saying He will Fight Against Fraud
· Scheduled to Hold Press Conference at 2 PM in Tehran, Not Clear if It be Allowed
(13 June 2009) [As of 1:30 PM Tehran Time] The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran expressed its serious concerns for the growing crisis in Tehran and the possibility of a violent crackdown against the opposition candidate, Mir Hossein Moussavi, and his supporters.
According to eyewitness reports from individuals present in front of Moussavi’s headquarters, several of his supporters were attacked by security forces and suffered serious injuries earlier today. They have been transferred to Sajjad Hospital for treatment.
Meanwhile, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, the famed Iranian director currently in Paris, told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that he is acting as the spokesperson for Moussavi’s Campaign abroad.
“After security forces attacked and shut down the press offices of Moussavi’s campaign in Gheitarieh yesterday, I was asked to act as their spokesperson abroad,” he said. He added that he is charged with informing the world that “last night Interior Ministry officials told Moussavi and his staff that he has won the elections but they should not make it public yet. Moussavi’s campaign, accordingly, began preparations for a public celebration on Sunday.”
This was before the first official claims of Ahmadinejad’s win were announced by the Election Committee. Since then, security and armed forces have made a strong presence in Tehran and the official media has put out figures claiming Ahmadinejad has won by a large margin. The Interior Ministry was to announce the final vote tally several hours ago, but has not done so as of this writing.
At around 1PM Tehran time, Moussavi issued a statement, addressing the Iranian people. “The officially announced results of the tenth presidential elections are shocking. People who waited in long lines and witnessed the voting process, and know who they voted for, are watching, in complete disbelief, the unfolding of magic tricks of the election officials and the state Radio and Television,” he stated.
“I register my strongest protest to the present process and to the obvious and widespread irregularities on election day. I warn that I will not surrender to this dangerous stagecraft….I recommend to the authorities to immediately put an end to this process before it is too late,” he continued.
“If Moussavi’s claim prove credible, that the Interior Ministry declared him the winner first and then turned around and officially announced Ahmedinejad is the winner, then the election was stolen in a matter of hours with the help of the Revolutionary Guards and security agents who have taken control of Tehran,” said Hadi Ghaemi, the spokesperson for the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.
According to latest reports, crowds are gathering at various parts of the capital protesting the election results. At 2 PM Tehran time, Moussavi is expected to hold a press conference at the offices of Etelaat newspaper, but it is not clear if it will be allowed.
The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran is concerned that police and security forces may violently confront Moussavi’s supporters and prevent him from making his challenge to official vote count public.
The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran will continue to issue updates as events in Tehran unfold.