Mir Hossein Mousavi
Photo: AFP
Mehdi Karoubi
Photo: AFP

Report: Iranian opposition leaders fled Tehran

Karoubi, Mousavi reported by government to have fled to northern province due to 'fear of punishment'

Leaders of the Iranian opposition Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi have fled Tehran to a northern Iranian province, state news agency IRNA said Wednesday.


"Two of those who played a major role in igniting tension in Iran following the vote, fled Tehran and went to a northern province because they were scared of people, who demanded their punishment," IRNA reported, without naming the two.


The report was immediately denied by a son of Karoubi. "My father and Mr. Mousavi are in Tehran and IRNA's report is baseless. They are still pursuing the people's demands," Hossein Karoubi told moderate Parlemannews.


Television footage of government-organized rallies held Wednesday showed hundreds of thousands of people, some of whom chanted "Mousavi is responsible for bloodshed ... We support our Supreme Leader". Some carried pictures of Khamenei. Similar rallies took place on Tuesday.


"People want the leaders of sedition to be punished. We will not remain silent over insulting the religion," one speaker told a Tehran rally, state TV reported.


"We have asked the judiciary to arrest the leaders of this sedition," said hardline MP Hasan Norouzi, without saying how many lawmakers made the demand. "Karoubi, Mousavi and all those who ignite tension should be arrested and tried."


Fars news agency said Mousavi's nephew, who was killed in opposition rallies on Sunday, was buried Wednesday at Tehran's Behesht-e Zahra cemetery.


Mousavi and Karoubi lost controversial June elections in Iran, and immediately called for a recount of votes. Since the elections they have vowed to fight the clerical government until their demands were carried out.


פרסום ראשון: 12.30.09, 21:51
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