Press TV - Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi has ordered officials to decide within a week the fate of protesters detained in the aftermath of the disputed presidential election.
"He has ordered that within a week a decision should be taken concerning the prisoners of the recent events," Judiciary spokesman Ali Reza Jamshidi told reporters on Monday, according to the Iranian Labor News Agency (ILNA).
Iran became the scene of street protests and political dissensions after its 10th presidential election in June when Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared victor by almost two-thirds of the votes. His rivals, however, contend that the vote results were the product of widespread fraud.
The supporters of defeated candidates Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi took to the streets in protest at the results, following which violence broke out and many demonstrators were detained. At least 20 people have been killed during the ensuing unrest.
The Iranian opposition has urged the release of
detainees while seeking a referendum on the legitimacy of the Ahmadinejad
government as a means to end the disquiet.
Senior Iranian official and cleric Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani has also called for the release of those who protested against the election, calling the measure the first step of trust building between the establishment and the nation.
Jamshidi said the Judiciary chief had ordered that "Those prisoners who have not committed serious enough crimes to be kept in jail should be freed."
According to his figures, at least 300 protesters remain behind bars.
Committee tasked with probe into detainees
Iran's prosecutor general says a committee has
been set up at the order of the Judiciary head to accelerate investigation into
the cases of those detained in the post-election protests.
"Based on a special order by the Judiciary Chief [Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi], a three-member committee will interact with responsible bodies to speed up the process of examining the cases of detainees and to send them to courts for fair judgment," Prosecutor General Qorban-Ali Dorri Najafabadi said on Monday.
On the issue, he said the Judiciary branch would respect the rights of those accused as well as the principles of the Constitution.
Concerning the controversy surrounding the deaths of two people in prison, the official commented that the Constitution deems any confession that can be considered forced as illegal.
Earlier, Iran's prosecutor general had put the number of people initially arrested at about 2,500. Nearly 2,000 of those arrested have since been released because they are not considered to have caused any violence.
According to Judiciary spokesman Ali Reza Jamshidi, at least 300 protesters remain behind bars and may be subject to court action.
A contentious issue that has emerged since the arrests is the deaths of Mohammad Kamrani and Mohsen Ruholamini -- an issue that has prompted critics to demand that no confessions be aired that may in any way be the result of alleged forced confessions.
Prison officials deny allegations that prisoners have been forced to make confessions and have named meningitis as the cause of the deaths.
Khamenei orders closure of post-vote prison
Amid reports of the mistreatment of detainees who
protested against the result of the presidential vote, the Leader of the Islamic
Revolution orders officials to shut down a "non-standard" prison.
The head of Iran's National Security Council said Monday that Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei had demanded that the prison which did not measure up to the required standards to be shut down.
"In the course of recent events, the Leader has ordered officials (to take measures), so that no one, God forbid, suffers injustice," Saeed Jalili said in a statement.
The presidential election in June, which lead to the re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as president, was followed by massive protests by supporters of the defeated candidates.
Thousands were detained in the aftermath of the vote, many of whom have since been released. According to Judiciary spokesman Ali-Reza Jamshidi, at least 300 people remain behind bars.
Jalili, who is also the representative of the Leader in the powerful council, added that Ayatollah Khamenei had insisted that officials were obliged to "precisely" probe into incidents in which wrongdoings may have been committed against detainees.
The Leader has repeatedly advised officials to abide by the law and personally follows up on the fate of detainees, Jalili added.
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