A renowned figure in Iran’s reform movement has expressed concerns over the safety and well-being of opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi.
In a note published on Kaleme, a website affiliated with Green Movement leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, veteran reformer Saeed Hajjarian praised the resistance of political activist Mostafa Tajzadeh in jail, ahead of his 55th birthday.
Tajzadeh is a member of the Central Council of the Islamic Iran Participation Front (Mosharekat) and of the Islamic Revolution Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MIRO), two of the country’s largest pro-reform groups. During Khatami’s presidency, he was Deputy Minister of the Interior. He was arrested one day after the fraudulent June 2009 presidential election and paraded in the televised show-trials of reformist figures in August of the same year.
Despite his release after nine months in prison, four months of which he spent in solitude, Tajzadeh was arrested along with six other prominent reformists for writing a grievance letter to Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) Commander Moshfeq and other regime officials for their role in facilitating fraud in the 2009 election.
In addition to being taken back to prison after the publication of the letter, Tajzadeh was transferred to the Quarantine Ward of the notorious Evin Prison where he is still being detained. Thus far, the outspoken critic of Iran’s hardliners has had to endure more than a year and a half of solitary confinement. He is reportedly barred from receiving any visitors.
Hajjarian, who was disabled after an assassination attempt in 2000, described Tajzadeh’s continued incarceration as “illegal” and expressed hope for his eventual release. “For more than two years, he has been away from us, and is serving an illegal sentence. Nevertheless, we are kept up-to-date about his analyses and viewpoints,” the statement went on to add.
“Unfortunately, in recent weeks, shocking and disturbing news reports have been published by certain websites close to the ruling factions, suggesting that Mr Mousavi has been diagnosed with an incurable illness and that doctors have lost [all] hope of treating him. I have to express my serious concern over [the publication of] such reports, which are not only unprincipled, but also alarming,” warned Hajjarian, once a political advisor to Former President Khatami and a member of Tehran’s City Council.
Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi, who have spearheaded the pro-democracy Green Movement since its conception in 2009, were placed under house after calling for demonstrations in support of the Arab Sptring in mid-February.
In his recent scathing report on Iran’s human rights abuses, UN special rapporteur Ahmad Shaheed expressed concern over the absence of any formal charges against Mousavi and Karroubi as well as their loss of “control over their health care, access to publications, privacy and the ability to live a normal life.”