Ahmadinejad blames West for fomenting Iran unrest
The Iranian president's accusations come as opposition leaders start movement, challenge Supreme Leader's standing.
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The indictment goes on to accuse the CIA, Israeli intelligence assets, the philanthropist George Soros, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, and the German Council on Foreign Relations of plotting to overthrow Iran's government. Such beliefs in the Iranian theocracy seem to be shaping the Iranian opposition's plans to move forward.Skip to next paragraph
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Opposition leader Mir Hussein Moussavi announced Saturday on his website that he was starting a "grass-roots and social network" in promotion of democracy, reports The New York Times, but he specifically supported Iranian institutions that have long been targets of Western criticism, such as the Revolutionary Guards.
In his announcement, Mr. Moussavi countered efforts to portray him as a tool of secular foreigners, affirming his support for institutions like the Revolutionary Guards and the Basij militia, despite the fact that they are widely believed to be in charge of the current crackdown. But he also lashed out at the recent threats aimed at him and his supporters, saying, "Instead of accusing this millions-strong group, you should look to those who have created a poisonous propaganda war that served the interests of the enemy."
Mr. Moussavi's announcement comes a day after a group of former reformist lawmakers sent an "unprecedented" letter to the Assembly of Experts, challenging the authority of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to hold the role of Supreme Leader, reports The Wall Street Journal. The Assembly of Experts is the body that has the power to name the Supreme Leader, and to remove him from power.
The letter states that according to Iran's constitution, the supreme leader isn't above the law and that the assembly has the right to review his performance as a religious and political leader. "We demand a legal probe on the basis of Article 111 of the Constitution, which is a responsibility of the Experts Assembly," stated the letter, which was written by the head of the organization of former reformist lawmakers. Article 111 says if the supreme leader "becomes incapable of fulfilling his constitutional duties," he will be dismissed. ... Criticizing the supreme leader was once unthinkable, and had serious repercussions. Now, demonstrators regularly chant slurs against Mr. Khamenei and write insults about him in green spray paint on walls in the capital.
The Journal notes that while it is unlikely that the Assembly of Experts will respond to the letter, the letter signals that "the reform movement has become more radical and is placing itself squarely against the regime and its top authority."