An Iranian reformist group says heeding the popular demands for reform can “save the regime from collapse and degeneration.”
The Islamic Iran Participation Front issued a statement on Norooz website today saying that by supporting fair elections and rejecting military interference, the people are focussing on reforms that will guarantee the longevity of the system.
The country’s top reformist party notes similarities between the words and deeds of “Iran’s power mongers” and the supporters of Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president who was just unseated. The Front, which has been outlawed by the hardline establishment and seen many of its members arrested over the past year, says there are also parallels between Iranian and Egyptian youth in their demands for “freedom and change.”
The Front adds, however, that unlike the rebellion in Egypt, the focus of the Green Movement is not to bring down the system. “The Greens are led by the spirit of the Revolution, which is unyielding adherence to the constitution in order to achieve national accord.”
Mubarak finally gave up office yesterday after 18 days of consecutive street protests all across the country. Iran’s opposition has been trying to ride the wave of Arab unrest in order to reignite the protests in Iran that followed the 2009 presidential elections but were crushed by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and security forces.
The opposition has proposed that a peaceful demonstration in support of the Arab uprisings be held on Monday, February 14.
The government calls the protests and their leaders seditious, but the reformists maintain that the objective of the protests is simply reform through the existing constitution.
“In Iran, the protests are geared toward totalitarian rulers and interfering military and security cells that have hijacked the constitution,” the Islamic Iran Participation Front writes.
It goes on to warn authorities that recent events in Tunisia show that “lasting stability, peace and security can only be achieved through guaranteeing civil rights as well as free and fair elections.”
In the meantime, the Society of Qom Seminarians and Researchers, a group of reformist clerics, has also invited Iranians to join the February 14 rally. A statement on its website reads: “We hope the freedom-seeking people of Iran join the supporters of the Islamic awakening all across the world by joining the independent, popular and non-government demonstrations.”
Yesterday all across Iran demonstrations were staged to celebrate the anniversary of the 1979 Revolution. Slogans in support of the Arab uprisings were chanted along with the customary pro-government slogans.
Iranian authorities have accused the opposition of trying create divisions among the people by proposing a different date for a rally in support of the Arab people.