I’m NiteOwl AKA Josh Shahryar – twitter.com/iran_translator on twitter – and I’ve been immersed in tweets from Iran for the past several hours. I have tried to be extremely careful in choosing my tweet sources. What I have compiled below is what I can confirm through my reliable twitter sources.
1. 1. Today, people gathered at Vali Asr Square -the entire place was packed with Security Forces. Guards at Vanak Square were reportedly breaking car windows (those that honked their horns) which is a sign of the current protests. After security forces tried to arrest a young girl, some clashes broke out. (There was no further news about this event so confirmation is partial only.)
2. About 10 people were arrested at Tajrish Square after a group of people gathered there and chanted against the regime. Clashes were also reported at Satarkhan Street and Jomhori Street. The Independent Youth was also planning to organize a protest today in Tehran, however, reports were scarce and no confirmations could be obtained of the protests.
3. Today, more than 2,000 people gathered in front of the Islamic Republic Court in Urumieh asking about their detained relatives. So far, thousands have been rounded-up during protests, as well as during day and night-time raids all over the country. The number cannot be verified but it is said to be in the thousands. Mousavi and Karoubi have denied having sanctioned yesterday’s protests.
4. Mousavi has been reported by Iran Press TV to only be accepting of a new election. Mousavi’s campaign today called the widespread arrests “immoral and illegal.” Furthermore, they said that the torture of detained civilians could produce anti-revolutionary sentiments amongst the people, thus damaging the Islamic Revolution severely. There were reports of a National Strike being organized and propagated on Mousavi’s website, but it cannot be confirmed through independent sources.
5. The Iranian government has meanwhile banned Mousavi’s ally, Abolfazl Fateh, from leaving the country. Abolfazl Fateh today said that elections were “a deeply political concept and militarizing them was uncommon, costly and worrisome.” He said that their campaign would only release word on GhalamNet. Meanwhile, Mousavi’s website – GhalamNet – today denied sending new letters to the Guardian Council and rejected GC spokesperson’s claims yesterday about receiving fresh Mousavi demands. On the cyber side, Ayatollah Montazeri’s website has been taken down by the Ministry of Interior after he denounced the elections and called the government clamp-down on peaceful protesters against Islam.
6. Today, Khatami called for a change in the security presence on the streets of Iran, as well as for the formation of an independent commission to investigate complaints against the election. He added that, “force should not be used to make people do what one wants them to.” He added that the general trust of the Iranian people have been damaged by such tactics.
7. Karoubi announced in a letter to that Iranian people that he didn’t recognize the government’s legitimacy. Karoubi said that he entered the election for “change” and that hidden forces had blatantly changed the outcome. Karoubi objected to widespread arrests and asked officials for the immediate release of all detainees, as well as reparation of their reputation. He expressed readiness to work with individuals and groups because he perceived the republic, Iran and Islam to be in danger.
8. Ayatollah Taheri stated that Mousavi’s rights had been violated. Taheri – the former Friday Imam of Isfahan – called Ahmadinejad’s appointment illegal. He added that the old enemies of Imam [Khomeini] were sending the Islamic Republic to the museum with their actions [meaning it will be removed and become part of history if these actions don’t stop]. In response, a member of parliament today openly criticized Taheri and said that he was longer a senior cleric. After him, Pezeshkian – a reformist MP – told the parliament that God’s enemy was he who stood against the people.
9. Ahmadinejad declared that an attempt at a ‘soft overthrow’ of the regime had failed. This comes after a partial recount of 10% of the vote by the Guardian Council which resulted in slightly more votes of Ahmadinejad!!! Mohammad Yazdi, a cleric and member of the Guardian Council, announced today that he could personally testify as to the impartiality of the election. He added that Mousavi will be barred from taking part in any future elections.
10. Tehran’s notorious Evin prison is reportedly packed to capacity now and security forces are housing the detained in football stadiums. So many people are put in Tehran’s prisons that prisoners only have standing space. Reports say guards are preventing prisoners from sleeping by keeping them standing all night. Amnesty International today warned that the opposition leaders arrested in Iran were at risk of being tortured.
11. Maziar Bahari was forced to confess at a press conference that the protests were pre-planned and organized from abroad. Bahari is an adroit Iranian-Canadian Journalist and filmmaker, who has written for Newsweek and the New Statesman. Meanwhile,the torture of university students continues in the Ministry of Interior. Some Iranians traveling to Iran for the holidays have been taken in for questioning directly at the airport as they tried to leave the country. They were questioned because of updated information on their Facebook accounts.
12. There is still no news about Mojtaba Tehrani, an Etemad Melli correspondent. Three days have passed after his arrest. Another correspondent of Etemade Melli, Mahsa Amrabadi, who has been in detention for two weeks, has only been allowed to briefly call her family. Her whereabouts are unknown.
13. On the good side of things, Isfahan’s judicial sources announced the freedom from detention of 280 people who’d been arrested during the protests. Hundreds more still remain in detention. But today, it was announced that the legal prosecution of detained prisoners has started. The man in charge, Saeed Mortazavi, has led many to believe that dozens will probably be sentenced to death as he is notorious in seeking and getting death sentences for dissidents in Iran.
14. Police today entered Tehran University’s dorms at the request of the president of the university, reportedly. However, the president, Mr. Kohkan, later denied he had asked them to do so. Amir Hossein Shemshadi, in charge of Mousavi’s youth campaign, contacted his parents from inside Evin today and told them he would not be freed anytime soon
15. The Daily Khabar was stopped from printing its daily paper for the fourth time this week. Tehran public prosecutor and Cultural Ministry officials also stopped the publication of Etemade Melli newspaper today following its plans to publish a letter by Karoubi. Pressured by security forces, the session of the Journalists Union of Iran was also canceled. The sessions were to be focused on detained journalists.
16. The chants of Allah o Akbar continued tonight even though Basijis have threatened people with arrests and destruction of property if they continue to do so. One chanter has already been killed in the past days.