Iran’s Supreme Leader Denounces 2009 Street Protests in Iran, Calling on People to Follow Legal Channels during Upcoming Parliamentary Elections
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei today told a large crowd gathered in Kermanshah’s sports stadium that the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ protests in the US show that 99 percent of the American people are not supporting their government and only one percent of the country is imposing its rule over the people, using their treasure to wage wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and in support of Israel. Ayatollah Khamenei predicted that the capitalist regimes in the US and in the West will collapse.
Pointing to street protests in Tehran and other cities in Iran after the June 2009 parliamentary elections, Ayatollah Khamenei said the “troubles” (the Green Movement) were dealt with powerfully by the people and were defeated two days after the Ashura demonstrations. The ayatollah was referring to the day when he made a major speech at the University of Tehran’s Friday Prayer two days after one of the largest pro-Green demonstrations, during which he denounced the street protesters and publicly sided with the sitting president (Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) in the disputed election.
Ayatollah Khamenei called on people’s vast participation in the upcoming parliamentary elections, scheduled for 2 March 2010. Referring to the experience of the 2009 presidential election, Khamenei said even if some people would object to the outcomes of the 2012 parliamentary elections, they should channel their objection through legal means.
The supreme leader was clearly discouraging any future anti-government street protests in Iran, especially during the upcoming parliamentary elections, while wholeheartedly supporting the anti-government street protests in the US.
Ayatollah Khamenei, in a pointed and threatening remark, said if an official of the Islamic Republic wants to take a path opposed to the ideals of the Islamic revolution, the people will eliminate him.
In another part of his speech, Khamenei again called on the heads of three branches of the government to pursue the case of the recent multi-billion dollar banking embezzlement in the country to the very end by prosecuting all the guilty parties. He again emphasized the importance of waging a campaign against financial and official corruption in the country.
For a report on Ayatollah Khamenei’s speech, in Farsi, please see the official Iranian news agency, IRNA.