Iran cuts off opposition leaders from all outside contact
Iranian opposition leader MirHosein Mousavi and his wife Zahra Rahnavard lost their last link to the outside world today when their personal guards were dismissed by the Islamic Republic security forces.
Kaleme website reports that the house arrest of these two opposition leaders has become complete, with no direct news of the couple in the past three days.
They have been confined to their home since February 14, when hundreds of thousands of Iranians responded to a rally call from Mousavi and fellow opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi to march in support of popular uprisings in the Arab world. The march turned into an anti-government rally after government forces tried to violently quash the protests. Two people were killed, dozens were injured and thousands were arrested.
According to Kaleme, the guard kiosk at the entrance to Mousavi's street is empty, and the spot where Mousavi's personal guards used to stand next to his home is now occupied by security forces from an unidentified government institution.
A security van has blocked the entrance to the street, and all traffic is closely monitored. Eyewitnesses report that the passengers in the security van are masked.
Kaleme notes that Mousavi and Rahnavard are left to eat food that's being supplied by the security forces, which is cause for further concern.
Opposition websites report there has been no contact with Mousavi since February 15, and the security personnel now stationed within his home are preventing any unauthorized contact.
Yesterday Mousavi and Rahnavard's daughters expressed concern for their parents' well being, saying it is no longer possible to say with certainly if the two opposition leaders are in fact still in their home.
The head of Iran's judiciary announced yesterday that the authorities will ensure that the opposition leaders will no longer be allowed to issue statements.
Today the head of the Guardian Council, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, echoed that announcement, telling worshippers at the Friday Mass prayers in Tehran that the opposition leaders must be cut off from all forms of communication.