Ali Younesi

President Rohani’s adviser Ali Younesi says the administration does not have the authority to end the house arrest of opposition leaders MirHosein Mousavi, Zahra Rahnavard and Mehdi Karroubi, adding: “We can only try to lay grounds for their release.”

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday November 11 on the sidelines of the Media Fair in Tehran, Younesi added that certain forces are against ending the house arrests, saying: “They want to keep the atmosphere inflamed.”

During his campaign, Hassan Rohani committed himself to ending house arrests.  Ali Motahari, an outspoken MP, has repeatedly criticized the administration’s failure to act more decisively toward ending the house arrests of the opposition leaders, who have been cut off from the public since February 2011 for challenging the result of the 2009 presidential election, which led to mass protests in cities across the country.