In his first meeting with all three of his three daughters since he was put under house arrest in February, opposition leader MirHosein Mousavi said the restricted political situation does not warrant participation in the coming parliamentary elections.
On Wednesday September 7, the Kaleme opposition website reported on Mousavi’s meeting with his daughters and quoted him saying: “In view of the rigidity of the current situation, one cannot rest any hopes on the election and participating in it.”
MirHosein Mousavi and his wife, Zahra Rahnavard, have been under house arrest since February, virtually cut off from the outside world.
Kaleme writes that the family meeting was unprecedented because it took place in the home of one of the daughters, away from the house where Mousavi and Rahnavard have been confined for the past seven months. A senior member of the judiciary was also present at the meeting.
Mousavi and Rahanavard have reportedly told their children that they are denied access to newspapers, radio and even pen and paper in an attempt to “erase the truth from our minds.” They have said that government forces have confiscated many of their belongings, including a number of paintings and artifacts.
MirHosein Mousavi and Zahra Rahnavard were put under house arrest after Mousavi, along with the other Iranian opposition leader, Mehdi Karroubi, rallied Iranians on February 14 to demonstrate in support of the Arab uprisings in the region.
The two opposition leaders have each been held under house arrest, together with their wives, and completely cut off from the outside world without being officially charged with any crime.
The two had challenged Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s victory in the 2009 presidential election, which led to widespread protests across the country.
The Islamic Republic will hold parliamentary elections in March, and for months reformists have been hotly debating whether they should take part as candidates.
Mohammad Khatami, a former Iranian president and top reformist figure, has said reformists cannot participate until: all political prisoners are released; the strict political atmosphere is opened up; the media is allowed to report freely; and political parties commit to a transparent election process.