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VIDEO: Rights Group Says Iran Leader Should Release ‘Kidnapped’ Opposition Leaders

By Ali Gharib

"VIDEO: Rights Group Says Iran Leader Should Release ‘Kidnapped’ Opposition Leaders"

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Iranian opposition leaders Karroubi (L) and Moussavi (R)

Nearly a year ago in Iran, former prime minister Mir Hossein Moussavi, his wife and adviser Zahra Rahnavard, and reformist parliamentarian Mehdi Karroubi were placed under house arrest, where they’ve languished since, incommunicado with the outside world. Now, as the anniversary of their detention nears, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran (ICHRI) is calling on Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to release the three opposition leaders.

Moussavi and Karroubi were both presidential candidates in the June 2009 election — where critics allege the government committed widespread fraud to keep incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in power — and subsequently became public faces of the Green opposition movement that faced a brutal regime crackdown.

In addition to an interactive timeline of the house arrests and a letter-writing campaign aimed at freeing the opposition leaders, ICHRI released this short video about the affair:

In the ICHRI release, the group’s spokesman Hadi Ghaemi said:

Khamenei bears the ultimate responsibility for these house arrests, which indeed are nothing short of a kidnapping. Khamenei is operating above the law of the land, and the intelligence and judicial apparatus are tools of repression in his hands, operating with impunity and without any regard for the law or the constitution.

According the ICHRI, the “house arrests are illegal under both Iranian and international law,” and no Iranian agency or official has taken responsibility.

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