The nephew of Iranian opposition leader Mir Hussein Mousavi was killed during bloody riots at the beginning of the week, but the Iranian regime, as usual, has a slightly different take on events.
In an article published Tuesday, the editor of the conservative paper Kayhan accused Mousavi of planning the murder of his own nephew. He also accused opposition leaders of maintaining links to "Zionists" and receiving orders from the Israeli secret service agency, the Mossad.
Editor Hussein Shariat-Madari wrote that "since the start of the riots, all the evidence suggests a connection between the leaders of the struggle and Zionists, and that they received orders straight from the Mossad or via the CIA." Shariat-Madari is known to be close to supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
"The bloodthirsty enemies and agents who receive their orders from Israel didn't even baulk at the murder of their own nephew," the editorial fumed, calling on the Iranian leadership to deal with the organizers of the riots and not to ignore those it called "hooligans."
After it was reported Monday that the body of Ali Mousavi had disappeared from the hospital, the official Iranian news agency IRNA issued a press release announcing that the body of Mousavi's nephew and four other bodies had been taken by the police in order to complete the investigations. According to the report, "the bodies were taken for investigation and post mortem and in order to find further evidence relating to this suspicious incident."
On Monday, exiled Iranian film director Mohsen Makhmalbaf, associated with the opposition, said that some people approached Mousavi and shot him at close range. According to IRNA, "The bullet and type of weapon and all the rest of the evidence shows that this was undoubtedly an attempt to kill."
Makhmalbaf claimed that it was an attempt to pressure Mousavi. However, it is still not clear who is behind the killing, though there are suspicions that one of the state secret security services is responsible.
After the Iranian government accused western states of inciting the riots, the Revolutionary Guard announced that the foreign media are "conducting psychological warfare with the aim of bringing down the Ayatollah regime," in collaboration with the opposition.
The largest reform party in the state called on Iran's leaders to respect the constitution and apologize to the nation for the riots in which at least nine opposition protesters were killed on Sunday. A notice posted on the opposition website, Norooz, asserted that this was "the only way of putting an end to the crisis."