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Iran reformists protrayed as anti-Khomeini by hardliners

Report by Radio Zamaneh

Iranian hardliners once more attacked the opposition and their recent protests targeting the opposition's focus on the "republic" aspect of the Islamic Republic system insisting that their actions are contrary to the views of Imam Khomeini the leader of the 1979 Revolution.

Ahmad Khatami (file photo, June 2009)

In his Friday sermon, Ahmad Khatami, leading Tehran's mass prayers said: "Whoever uses the word "democratic" in conjunction with the Islamic Republic is our enemy...and whoever wants a "republic" is our enemy for he is the enemy of Islam."

IRNA reports that Ahmad Khatami accused those who use "Iranian Republic" as a motto, of taking advantage of the country's situation and insisted that "Those who use this slogan are against the Imam."

Protesters of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's victory in the June elections claim the elections were rigged to secure the president a new term in office. While the massive demonstrations and protests that immediately followed the elections were suppressed under violent attacks of the armed forces, on September 18, Qods Day, a day that Iran has been staging pro-Palestinian demonstrations for the past thirty years, election protesters once more took to the streets and tens of thousands of people competed with their own slogans against the usual anti-Israel chants trying to bring home their national concerns about the legitimacy of their government and their demands for reform.

One of the chief slogans chanted by protesters on Qods Day was "Independence, freedom; Iranian Republic!" Ahmad Khatami condemned opposition attempts to connect this chant with the ideologies of Imam Khomeini, the leader of the Iranian 1979 Revolution.

MirHosein Mousavi, chief opponent of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the runner up in the elections, has repeatedly represented his legal objections to the conduct of the June elections and the government's consequent actions, with reference to Imam Khomeini's views.

Ahmad Khatami defied foreign media once more for exaggerating the Qods Day protests by highlighting what he described as a "small crowd of a few thousands" and "neglecting the millions that had joined the events" in protest to Israel.

Qods Day events were also the focus of the supreme leader's deputy representative to the elite Revolutionary Guards, Mojtaba Zolnoor yesterday. He insisted that turning this day against the system to the benefit of America and Israel is in contradiction to Imam Khomeini's ways who founded this day as a day of solidarity with palestinians.

Zolnoor claimed: "Anti-revolutionary groups, Islamic nationalists, Nehzat-e Azadi (Freedom Movement), even Marxists and supporters of liberal democracy were after toppling the system through riots and diversions; even the Baha'is, for the first time, appeared in the election scene in support of a particular candidate."

Mr. Zolnoor echoed the claims of Iranian authorities in saying that the protests were pre-planned by the enemies of the Islamic Republic and many prominent figures of the system were taken advantage of by this conspiracy.

The post-election protests have revealed deepening divisions and cracks in the Islamic Republic establishment which the conservatives have been trying to plaster over. Ayatollah Rafsanjani, the chairman of the Expediency Council and the Assembly of Experts is probably the most prominent political figure that has at times aligned himself with the cause of protesters by calling for an investigation into the elections and calling for the release of post-election detainees.

The grandson of Ayatollah Khomeini is another prominent figure who has openly supported the protests by refusing to attend Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's inauguration.

... Payvand News - 10/10/09 ... --

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