Members and supporters of the dissident political group Freedom Movement of Iran have called for an “active boycott” of the March 2 parliamentary elections.
A statement from Freedom Movement supporters and members living abroad reads: “In the current atmosphere of severe oppression of progressive and democracy-seeking forces and the spirit of despair risen from the widespread vote fraud and foregoing of the majority vote in the 2009 presidential elections, as well as rising restrictions and the lack of the slightest positive sign toward any political reconsideration and the establishment of free and healthy elections, all possibilities for the participation of democratic forces in the elections have been dashed”
The statement goes on to condemn the arrest of six members of Freedom Movement’s executive committee as well as the sentencing of party leader Ebrahim Yazdi to eight years in prison and five years without any civic rights.
The statement also expressed concern over the growing power of “the totalitarian and reactionary forces” in the Islamic Republic.
The statement calls on all political activists to make every effort to “expose the totalitarianism of the establishment and inform the Iranian public of the outcomes of continued human rights violations in Iran.”
The statement also warns the Islamic Republic that the people are faced with two options for trying the reform the country — at the ballot box or through a wholesale regime change — and disillusion with the elections will leave them with only one choice.
Iran’s parliamentary elections will begin March 2. The majority of opposition groups and reformists have boycotted the elections to protest the growing number of political prisoners and the house arrest of opposition leaders MirHosein Mousavi, Zahra Rahnavard and Mehdi Karroubi.