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Iran: Opposition Leader Khatami Says Election Procedures Must Change

Report Source: Radio Zamaneh

Mohammad Khatami, Iran's former president and one of the leaders of the reform movement in Iran, told a group of Tehran University's student activists that the reform movement is "meaningless" without an overhaul of the election process in Iran.

Mohammad Khatami has been a staunch critic of the current Iranian election system and even as early as two years ago in a speech in Kerman he declared that "our current election laws are unfair."

Iranian reformists have consistently spoken out against election procedures and the Guardian Council's decisions regarding the approval of candidates.

The election debate reached a critical point this summer when reformist candidates claimed their votes were stolen and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was fraudulently re-elected. The election protests were followed by mass demonstrations all across the country. In the past five months Iran remains in turmoil as government forces crack down on protesters with violent attacks and widespread arrests claiming protesters are enemies of the Islamic system.

Mohammad Khatami condemned the violent government policies maintaining that this "Iranian movement" is not a momentary movement that can be suppressed by "fear." "This movement is a deep and widespread movement," he added.

The former president warned the authorities that "The people of Iran want freedom; they want financial, economic, social and political security and because they have suffered through despotism, they want to be masters of their destiny."

... Payvand News - 11/18/09 ... --

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