Iran regime calls for ''hatred'' rally against opposition

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Tehran, Feb 16 (AFP) Iran''s regime said it called arally in Tehran for Friday to express "hatred" against theopposition movement, as its two key leaders launched freshanti-government tirades despite demands they be hanged.

Today''s call for the mass rally came as clasheserupted between regime backers and "apparent" supporters ofthe opposition at a funeral attended by thousands in Tehran ofa student killed in anti-government protests of Monday.

"The noble people of Tehran will take to EnghelabSquare after Friday prayers with their solid and informedpresence," the Islamic Propagation Coordination Council, whichorganises regime-backed programmes, said today.

It said those joining the rally will "scream out theirhatred, wrath and disgust against the savage crimes and evilmovements of sedition leaders, their Monafeghin (hypocrites)and their monarchist allies."

Opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and MehdiKarroubi have been in the firing line since they called arally on Monday in support of Arab uprisings but which quicklyturned into anti-government demonstrations and ended inclashes that left two people dead and several wounded.

Both are under de facto house arrest and Karoubi''sson, Hossein, today said, in a statement on his father''sSahamnews.org website, that "security forces are currentlyoccupying my house... after breaking into the building...theyare searching my and my family''s personal belongings."

Iranian officials accuse arch-foes the United States,Britain and Israel of influencing the opposition chiefs, butsupreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei today said their effortswill fail.

"When people are in the arena, it (US) cannot doanything against the determined will (of the people)", hesaid, referring to the United States and indicating thatIran''s Islamic regime had strong support of masses.

Iran''s prosecutor general Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejeiewarned that action would be taken against Mousavi andKarroubi, a day after lawmakers demanded they be executed.

"The heads of seditions are the people who should bepunished for their criminal acts and God willing actions inthis regard are being taken," Mohseni Ejeie said, according toFars news agency.

"People have given them their punishment, but peoplealso have a legitimate right to demand (punishment) from thejudiciary which we hope we would be able to fulfill."

The authorities were infuriated when thousands ofanti-government protesters took to streets of Tehran onMonday, leading to clashes with riot-police.

Aside from the two deaths, officials reported severalpeople injured, including nine members of the security forces.

(AFP)

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