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Iranian protesters loyal to regime, says powerful cleric Rafsanjani

Source: Radio Zamaneh

Hashemi Rafsanjani

Ayatollah Rafsanjani, Chairman of the Assembly of Experts says that the majority of election protesters are loyal to the Islamic Republic and its constitution.

At the threshold of Islamic Republic Day in Iran, Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani reviewed the role of people in establishing their choice political system after the 1979 Revolution and discussed the demands of protesters of last June's presidential elections in a video interview.

He emphasized that most of the post-election protesters are not against the "principles" of the Islamic Republic but are rather after a kind of "reform."

These comments are said in contradiction to the statements of Ayatollah Khamenei and pro-Ahmadinejad public figures who in the past ten months have been insisting that election protesters are a group of "seditious rioters" who are trying to topple the regime.

Millions participated in peaceful rallies in Tehran and other cities. However, on June 19, the Supreme Leader Khamenei ordered crackdown on further protests. Tens of protesters have died in subsequent protests when they were confronted violently by the security forces and the Basij militia. Hundreds of protesters have also been detained and subjected to harsh treatments.

Opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi have also consistently expressed their loyalty to the Islamic Republic system and the constitution. They maintain that the aim of the opposition is to re-establish the original objectives of the Islamic Republic and reform the "deviations" that have occurred in its development.

Ayatollah Hashemi maintained that in the first years of the 1979 Revolution, regressive forces did not have much faith in republicanism but their voice was limited; however, in the current situation their voice has gained some echo.

The Chairman of Iran's Expediency Council went on to say that following the triumph of the Revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini, the leader of the Revolution, wanted the people to be in charge of governing the country both at the legislative and executive levels of the government.

Ayatollah Rafsanjani maintained that if more patience had been exercised in those early days, it would not have been necessary to review the constitution after ten years.

Ten years after the 1979 Revolution in Iran, the constitution was subjected to a comprehensive review through which the position of the Prime Minister was omitted while the powers of the Supreme Leader were expanded.

Related News:

  • Iran frees Rafsanjani's grandson on bail: report
    TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran has released on bail a grandson of former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani after he expressed "regret" for taking part in post-election protests, an Iranian news agency reported on Tuesday. Hassan Lahouti was detained by security police on Sunday at Tehran airport after arriving on a flight from abroad.

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