Senior Iranian cleric Ayatollah AliMohammad Dastgheib says security and military forces are creating insecurity in the country, and he accused the judiciary of blindly following their orders.
The Shiraz representative in the Assembly of Experts told Hadis-e Sarv website that, under such conditions, any talk of an obligation to participate in the elections is redundant.
The government critic went on to accuse the Guardian Council — the powerful body in charge of overseeing elections and upholding the constitution — of violating the law. He added that Parliament is also ineffective, citing its failure to carry out the plan to question the president, a motion that has been long in the making and has found stiff resistance despite having the support of 100 MPs at one point, which is well above the one-quarter support required for such a motion.
Ayatollah Dastgheib said the people are "disappointed and discouraged" and added that officials should take heed and "return to thier first principles instead of issuing threats."
Ayatollah Dastgheib went on to say that the root of the country’s problems lies in the incorrect interpretation of the concept of velayat faqih or the leadership of an expert cleric. He insisted that the supreme leadership cannot be seen as sainthood. It is the duty of the Assembly of Experts to oversee the function of the supreme leadership, and if the assembly becomes subordinate to the leader, then it will be "a mockery."
Ayatollah Dastgheib has been highly critical of the establishment’s handling of the protests that followed the 2009 presidential elections, which were marred by allegations of fraud. He has repeatedly condemned the house arrest of opposition leaders MirHosein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi and their wives, who have been completely cut off from the public since February 14, when they rallied people for the last major street protest.
Ayatollah Dastgheib was the only member of the Assembly of Experts that was not invited to its last meeting past September.