The leader of Friday Mass prayers in Mashhad accused opposition leaders MirHosein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi of treason, telling worshippers that their house arrest is for their own protection.
ISNA reports that Hojjatoleslam Ahmad Elmolhoda told worshippers that the house arrest is aimed at severing the link between the opposition leaders and the U.S.
“They are under house arrest so that they cease being hired slaves and servants of the U.S.,” the hardline cleric told worshippers in Mashhad.
“This house arrest is not prison but it is to cut off their communication with the U.S. and protect their lives,” Elmolhoda said. “Because people could rise and seek to cut them into pieces. Or the monafeghs, who have been fabricating scenarios to create martyrs, might kill them and hold them up as martyrs.”
The Islamic Republic establishment refers to the People’s Mojahedin Organization, the exiled dissident group, as monafeghin. During recent protests in Tehran, some authorities have referred to the death of two protesters on February 14 as a “martyr-making scenario” concocted by the “monafeghin.”
However, the opposition contends that the two men killed on February 14 in Tehran protest were shot to death by security forces.
The isolation of the two opposition leaders and their wives, including a complete blackout of news about their situation, has caused great concern among the opposition.