Iranian Parliament fell into turmoil when Ali Motahari stood up to question the house arrest of MirHosein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi and Zahra Rahnavard, and the session was finally brought to an end by the order of the deputy speaker.

Ali Motahari began his speech saying “I consider the house arrest of Mousavi, Karroubi and Rahnavard following the street riots without a court ruling to be against various provisions of the constitution.”

The statement was received with various slogans such as “death to seditionist”. Mousavi, Karroubi and Rahnavard have been under house arrest since February of 2011 for challenging the vote-count in the 2009 presidential election and triggering mass street protests. They are labeled as “elements of sedition” by the conservative establishment but so far they have never been formally charged or brought to trial.

Motahari was told by the head of the session, deputy speaker Mohammad Aboutorabi: “You are aware of the true atmosphere of the country, and these individuals have in effect been spared from death by Islamic mercy and forgiveness.”

Some conservative figures have suggested that if put on trial, the three leaders under house arrest would in effect get a death sentence for their alleged charges. Therefore, their current treatment, according to this interpretation, should be seen as “Islamic mercy and forgiveness”.

Motahari refused to accept Aboutorabi’s statement and once again stated that the treatment of three figures is unconstitutional.