Ardeshir Amir-Arjomand, senior aide to Green Movement leader Mir Hosseib Mousavi, has expressed his concerns over the well-being of the opposition leader and his wife Zahra Rahnavard.
Amir-Arjomand’s comments follow recent remarks by Rahnavard’s mother, Ehteramossadat Safavi, who voiced similar concerns regarding the physical health of her daughter and son-in-law in captivity.
On Wednesday, Kaleme, a website affiliated with Mousavi, published an interview with Safavi during which she described her latest visitation to the opposition couple’s home which, for the past 140 days, has also been their prison.
She stated Mousavi and his spouse were neither under house arrest nor in prison, but rather “taken as hostages.”
“Compared to previous visits, this most recent time, I noticed my daughter and son-in-law had suddenly become severely pale and thin. The sudden change in their appearance, their paler skin and weight loss is extremely worrisome,” she added.
Amir-Arjomand echoed similar concerns: “Having precise information [about their condition] requires medical tests, [yet] these tests are currently being carried out by doctors deemed trustworthy by the regime.”
“In any case, this issue entails a very serious and profound responsibility for officials in Iran’s judiciary and all those responsible for the illegal circumstances. Warnings must be issued regarding the condition of Mr Mousavi and Ms Rahnavard, for this is an extremely worrisome and upsetting affair for the Iranian nation and all Green Movement supporters, [an issue] which also provokes a great deal of sensitivities among the international community.”
“Iranian officials must understand they cannot act in any way they wish,” he said. “We call for medical attention (for Mr Mousavi and Ms Rahnavard) that is specific and according to their will.”
Rahnavard’s mother had told Kaleme that Iranian security personnel had declined requests for selecting a medical expert of their own choosing, saying “we have doctors of our own, we will attend to the matter.” She explained that family fears regarding the couple’s health would not be addressed unless authorities allowed for them to be examined by doctors chosen by the family.
Opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahdi Karroubi were placed under house arrest along with their wives after calling for protests on 14 February in solidarity with the uprisings of the Arab world.
“We’ve stated repeatedly that these [Iranian] officials are not taking responsibility [for the ongoing house arrest], and until now, none of them has ever been willing to officially announce the reason for the arrest of Mr Mousavi and Karroubi, Ms Rahnavard and Mrs Karroubi or to explain the judicial ruling and procedure which their arrest is based upon and what their rights are,” Amir-Arjomand told Radio Farda.
“The treatment of their family members is unacceptable,” Amir-Arjomand continued.
“The severe limitations enforced on family members is unjustifiable, and what is taking place is pure unlawfulness, just like many other cases in which the country’s officials have not been willing to provide answers,” he said.