Mousavi Accuses Iranian Authorities of Torture

Posted Aug 2, 2009 by Chris Dade
As over 100 opposition supporters go on trial in Iran, facing a variety of charges related to the demonstrations that followed June's disputed election, two leading opposition figures have come out with yet more fierce criticism of the authorities.
With a further 10 detainees brought in to court today, as the proceedings that began on Saturday continued, former President Mohammad Khatami has spoken of what he called the "show trials" now taking place.
Amongst those facing trial are a number of associates of Mr Khatami and the main opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi. According to reports by CBS News and the BBC they include the man who served as Vice-President during Mr Khatami's time in office, Mohammad-Ali Abtahi, former deputy foreign minister Mohsen Aminzadeh and former Industry Minister Behzad Nabavi.
The charges being faced by the defendants range from rioting and vandalism to conspiracy and Iranian state media has reported that Mr Abtahi has already "confessed" to his part in stirring up unrest within the country.
Following up on his accusation of "show trials" Mr Khatami added that the "real crimes" had actually been committed by the Iranian authorities. A statement on his website quotes him as saying on the matter:As far as I have learned, what happened in the trial was contrary to the constitution and law, as well as citizens' rights
But even Mr Khatami's strong comments could be considered mild when compared to those of Mr Mousavi, himself the subject of accusations from hardliners that he "directed the recent riots". Indeed the FARS news agency speaks of one hardliner, Mohammad Taghi Rahba, as having filed a complaint against Mr Mousavi in which he demanded that the opposition leader be put on trial.
Yet the prospect of such a trial has clearly not deterred Mr Mousavi, an opposition website attributing the following words to the man who came closest to beating the reelected President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad:The teeth of the torturers and confession-extorters have reached to the bones of the people. Witnessing such trumped-up trials, the only judgment that the conscience of humanity can make is the moral collapse and discredit of its directors
Mr Mousavi, whose stand is now attracting support from those such as Mohsen Rezaei who are usually considered as conservatives within Iran, described the trials now taking place as "theater" and asked:What do they expect to convince people with? A weak indictment based on confessions that share the tones of medieval torture
A further voice of dissent during the recent upheaval in Iran has been another former President, Hashemi Rafsanjani. Mr Rafsanjani still wields considerable power in Iran and holds the chairmanship of the Assembly of Experts, the body responsible for electing and dismissing the country's Supreme Leader.
Therefore the announcement by his brother-in-law, Hossein Marashi, that Mr Rafsanjani will not be attending this week's official endorsement of President Ahmadinejad by the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei or the President's swearing-in before Parliament on Wednesday will doubtless be considered significant by opponents and supporters of the current Iranian regime alike. The news that the former President would be absent from the coming week's events was released via the ILNA, a semi-official media outlet.