The leaders of Iran’s opposition Green Movement have applied for permission to stage a rally in Tehran in support of the Egyptian and Tunisian uprisings, posing a dilemma for the Iranian government which brutally put down their own mass protests a year ago, but has publicly and forcefully supported the uprisings in the Arab world.
The Green’s last organized demonstration was held in December 2009 during the Ashura, when eight protesters were killed and more than 1,000 arrested. They have asked to hold their new rally on Monday 14 February.
"To announce our solidarity with the public movement in the region, especially the freedom-seeking uprising of the peoples of Tunisia and Egypt against tyrannical governments, we ask for permission to invite the people to a rally," read a letter to the interior minister, signed by opposition leaders Mirhossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karrubi.
It is highly unlikely that the government would allow the Greens to hold the rally, which has the potential of becoming a huge anti-government demonstration in the heart of the Iranian capital. It was not clear if the Greens were ready to hold the rally without government's approval and risk a potentially deadly confrontation with the authorities.