Hadi Khamenei

Hadi Khamenei, the brother of Iran’s Supreme Leader, has called on the authorities to liberate the opposition leaders from their house arrest.

Kaleme reports that Hadi Khamenei criticized the house arrest of the opposition leaders during a visit with the children of MirHosein Mousavi and Zahra Rahnavard, saying: “This situation has been inexcusable from the beginning, and today in the lead up to the presidential elections, all house arrests and imprisonments must end in order to regain public confidence.”

After the 2009 presidential election, when reformist candidates Mehdi Karroubi and MirHosein Mousavi challenged the vote count, the government cracked down on election protesters, incarcerating thousands of people and eventually putting the two candidates and their wives under house arrest.

With the presidential elections in sight, the continued house arrest of the reformist candidates, who have not been formally charged with any crime, remains a sore point of debate among top establishment figures.

Hadi Khamenei emphasized the “honesty, confidence and leadership” of MirHosein Mousavi, adding that “today everyone can see the veracity of Mr. Mousavi’s statements and predictions.”

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei refused to heed the allegations of vote fraud in the last presidential election and instead referred to election protesters as “seditious elements.”

The opposition leaders have been effectively cut off from the outside world since February 14, 2011, when they last rallied their supporters to join a solidarity march in support of the Arab uprisings in the region.