[Guest post by DRJ]
The protests in Iran continue with reports of 10 more deaths, while the New-York based International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran claims injured protesters have been arrested at hospitals after seeking medical treatment. According to the Campaign, the government has ordered doctors to report protest-related injuries.
The organization also reports prison communications have been cut off:
“In another development, the Campaign has learned that communications out of Tehran’s Evin prison have been cut off. Evin prison is where many of Iran’s long-term political prisoners and a number of intellectuals, opposition politicians, human rights activists and journalists detained over the past several days are incarcerated.
“Blocking contact with friends and family means that all in Evin are in a virtual state of incommunicado detention, a state that puts them at an intensified risk of torture,” Ghaemi said.”
In addition, the eldest daughter of former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has been arrested. Bloomberg News describes Rafsanjani as a “behind-the-scenes supporter of opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi.” The AP describes this as evidence of a rift among the Iranian clerics:
“State-run Press TV reported that Rafsanjani’s eldest daughter, Faezeh Hashemi, and four other unidentified family members were arrested late Saturday. On Sunday evening, it said the four others had been released but that Hashemi remained in detention.
Rafsanjani, 75, heads two powerful institutions. One of them, the cleric-run Assembly of Experts, has the power to monitor and remove the supreme leader, the country’s most powerful figure. The second is the Expediency Council, a body that arbitrates disputes between parliament and the unelected Guardian Council, which can block legislation.
The assembly has never publicly reprimanded the unelected Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei since he succeeded Islamic Revolution founder Aytollah Ruhollah Khomeini in 1989. But the current crisis has rattled the once-untouchable stature of the supreme leader with protesters openly defying his orders to leave the streets.”
The article describes Rafsanjani as “deeply critical of Ahmadinejad during the presidential campaign” and a leader who “has the potential to lead an internal challenge to Khamenei.”