Protesters mourn 'Angel of Iran'
The Revolutionary Guard vowed to stop the street demonstrations, causing some protesters to stay home. But others gathered Monday to honor the death of Neda Soltan.
(Page 2 of 2)
Iranian officials announced that 457 people had been arrested on Saturday, and five members of the family of former President Hashemi Rafsanjani – including his politically active daughter – had been arrested and released.Skip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
"Giving up hope is probably the worst thing we could do [but] you just don't know what these people are going to do and what they are capable of," he says in a phone interview. "We're not violent, but they can be."
Just a little fraud?
A spokesman for the Guardian Council – a hard-line body of 12 clerics that is loyal to Iran's supreme religious leader, Ayatollah Sayed Ali Khamenei, and supports President Ahmadinejad – said complaints of fraud were overblown.
"Statistics provided by the candidates, who claim more than 100 percent of those eligible have cast their ballot in [between] 80 [and] 170 cities are not accurate," Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei told state TV. "The incident has happened in only 50 cities."
While Mr. Kadkhodaei said that problem could affect 3 million votes – in a race in which Ahmadinejad officially won 24 million to Mousavi's 13 million, he said it has "yet to be determined" if it would adjust the result.
But Ayatollah Khamenei ruled out any change in the result during a sermon last Friday. A foreign ministry spokesman called the June 12 vote a "brilliant gem shining on the peak of the Iranian election," and accused Western nations and the media of meddling and encouraging the turmoil.
Western media accused
Hassan Ghashghavi accused the directors of Voice of America and BBC Persian service of being "officially the spiritual children of [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu ... and their aim is to weaken the national solidarity ... and disintegrate Iran."
The BBC and CNN, he charged, had set up a "situation room and a psychological war room."
Too many votes cast
New details of election irregularities also emerged from analysts who compared official local and provincial results from the recent election with past votes, including the 2005 ballot that brought Ahmadinejad to the presidency.
Two conservative provinces registered more than 100 percent turnout, the report states, while four more topped 90 percent.
Polls prior to the election showed Iran's conservative president was in a tight race, or on his way to defeat. Yet to achieve the official results given him, the report says, in 10 of Iran's 30 provinces, "Ahmadinejad would have needed to win over all new voters, all former Rafsanjani voters, and also up to 44 percent of former reformist voters."