The campaign of harassments meted out to the family of imprisoned opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi entered a new stage on Sunday, after one of his daughters found herself in a dangerous car crash, reportedly caused by Iran’s security forces.
According to Kaleme, a website affiliated with Mousavi, the Green Movement leader’s youngest daughter was recently involved in a “serious” car crash, reportedly staged by the country’s security apparatus with the intent to intimidate the opposition figure’s family.
Mousavi, his wife Zahra Rahnavard and fellow Green Movement leader Mahdi Karroubi were placed under house arrest in February 2011 after calling for protests in solidarity with the Arab Spring. Human rights groups say that their ongoing house arrest is against international conventions as well as Iran’s own constitution.
Since their house arrest, Mousavi’s three daughters—Zahra, Kokab and Narges—and son-in-laws have been subject to threats and harassment from the Iranian regime. The country’s security forces recently threatened the daughters with imprisonment and, one of them, who had been studying art at Azzahra University, has already been barred from attending school without receiving any form of written explanation. Azzahra is Iran’s sole women-only university. Zahra Rahnavard was a professor and chancellor there for a number of years.
Kaleme reports that on Sunday, Mousavi’s youngest daughter was driving on a motorway when a car with three occupants began to tailgate her car “persistently” until the chase came to an abrupt end with a “very severe” rear-end collision. While the young Mousavi survived the crash uninjured, her vehicle was “severely damaged.”
The website went on to add, “Two of the men quickly fled the scene … The driver of the [Kia] Pride insisted that he would directly pay compensation for the damages inflicted to the car … He declined to show any identification or insurance documents and provided two telephone numbers, both of which were out of service.”
Kaleme says that the man then presented himself as an employee of Iran’s notorious Evin prison and stressed that “at Evin, everyone knows me,” without providing any further information as to what his precise role at the facility is. The opposition site hinted that the country’s security services had been behind the collision. It promised its readers it would provide them with images showing the impact of the crash and the substantial damage.
Two years ago, Mousavi and Rahnavard were injured in another car crash. Rahnavard was subsequently hospitalised. That incident was also staged by Iran’s security agencies, Kaleme reports.
Since the start of Mousavi’s captivity in February 2011, his daughters have effectively been his only channel of communication with the outside world, sometimes through visitations and other times via the even shorter phone calls he is occasionally allowed.
During their most recent and second-ever meeting with their daughters, Mousavi and Rahnavard are said to have been in high spirits. The former Prime Minister reportedly told his daughters that he and his wife had not voted in the 2 March parliamentary elections, which were boycotted by the country’s major opposition groups.