Iranian opposition leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi criticized Ahmadinejad administration for its timing of cutting government subsidies in view of Iran's current economic situation.
Mehdi Karroubi (left) and Mir Hossein Mousavi during a press conference in June 2010
Saham news reports that the two opposition leaders met
yesterday at Mehdi Karroubi's home to discuss the current national affairs.
The two leaders agreed that the cutting of government subsidies is a fundamental economic move and thus requires expert implementation. They added that in the current economic situation while the country is facing international sanctions, "recession", rising unemployment and rampant rise in inflation, implementation of this plan cannot be optimal and will be a heavy burden for the middle and lower classes of the nation.
Karroubi and Mousavi contended that "every day closure of factories", failure in payment of workers' wages and the departure of investors due to the "lack of investment security and healthy economic competition" boded ill for the future of the country.
The opposition leaders also criticized the administration for
refusing to take into consideration the opinion of the experts. The cutting of
government subsidies which the government refers to as "the targeting of
government subsidies" began implementation last Sunday. Immediately after the
announcement, Tehran and other large cities of the country came under heavy
security measures to confront any unrest.
Fariborz Rais Daana, an economist who expressed misgivings about the plan in an interview, was immediately arrested. The administration maintains that any criticism of this plan is in fact "a conspiracy by seditious elements" and has vowed to prosecute any resistance to the implementation of the changes in government subsidies.
Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi touched on the issue of Iranian political prisoners and spoke out against the heavy sentences handed to political prisoners by the judiciary but they also called on the prisoners, who have gone on hunger strike in protest of their situation, to end their hunger strike.
In conclusion, they dismissed the threats of arrest and prosecution against them and stressed that they will not be swayed by such threats.
The Islamic Republic establishment repeatedly announces that while they have delayed in prosecuting the leaders of the opposition, they will do so at an opportune time.
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