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Pro-Khatami students rally against political violence

TEHRAN, Jan 12 (AFP) - About 300 Iranian students staged a rally here on Tuesday accusing opponents of President Mohammad Khatami of trying to obstruct his investigation into the recent murders of writers and dissidents.

The protestors gathered inside the Tehran University campus, shouting slogans in support of Khatami and calling for the resignation of conservative Intelligence Minister Ghorban-Ali Dorrie Najafabadi, witnesses said.

Najafabadi has come under pressure to step down over the involvement of a number of secret agents in the murders of nationalist opposition leader Daryush Foruhar and his wife as well as several liberal writers in the past two months.

The students, members of Islamic associations in Tehran universities, also demanded that the conservative head of state radio and television Ali Larijani step down after accusing him of taking a stand against the president.

Khatami's supporters are outraged by a television interview on Monday with Ruhollah Hosseinian, a hardline cleric who accused the president's allies of having a role in the murders in a bid to take over the powerful intelligence ministry.

BBC Report:

Photo by IRNA

Teheran students demonstrate over recent murders

Tuesday, January 12, 1999 Published at 14:09 GMT

(BBC) - Several hundred students have demonstrated in Teheran in protest against what they call an attempt by hardliners to obstruct the investigation into a series of recent murders of liberal intellectuals and writers.

The demonstration was held on the campus of Teheran University, where angry students chanted slogans supporting the reformist President, Mohammed Khatami.

They also demanded the resignation of the country's Intelligence Minister, some of whose officials are among those arrested in connection with the killings.

A special committee has been set up to investigate the killings; it says it has already identified all the members of the gang involved, and that apart from ten people already arrestred, others are under surveillance.


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