Iran video 'supports claims of rigging in 2009 poll'

Street protest in Tehran, June 2009 Hundreds of thousands of Iranians protested against the defeat of the reformist candidate in 2009

A video has emerged of a speech by an Iranian military commander that appears to back claims that the 2009 elections were rigged against the reformists.

The recording, which has been posted on the internet, features Mohammed Ali Ja'fary, the head of the Revolutionary Guards, addressing officials.

He can be heard saying that a reformist election victory seemed likely - but would be unacceptable to the Guards.

The reformists eventually lost the race, prompting huge street protests.

Hundreds of thousands of people demonstrated in the capital, Tehran, claiming that their votes had been stolen.

In the ensuing crackdown, hundreds were killed and thousands jailed.

The video of the speech was obtained and posted on the internet by Mohammed Nourizad, a well-known dissident in Tehran.

He says the tape is shameful evidence that the 2009 election was rigged in favour of the then-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was running for his second term.

The unrest that followed the election seriously undermined the legitimacy of the government.

The damage to the Islamic system's reputation convinced Iran's hardline leaders that they should tolerate the election of Hassan Rouhani, a relative moderate, in the following presidential election, held last year.

In their view, it was important to avoid another round of unrest that would threaten the stability of the whole system of government.

More on This Story

More Middle East stories

RSS

Features & Analysis

  • Baby in boxStrange case

    The remarkable appeal of the Finnish baby boxes


  • WW1 gas mask being demonstratedTrench terror

    Did the soldiers of WW1 have an irrational fear of poison gas?


  • Mitt Romney, speaks at the podium as he concedes the presidency during Mitt Romney's campaign election night event at the Boston Convention 7 November 2012Aura of a loser?

    Mitt Romney looked presidential but could never pull it off


  • A woman holds up a feminist sign.PC virus

    Is liberal speech policing out of control?


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • ReadingBest books

    BBC Culture takes a look at ten books you should read in February

Programmes

  • A car being driven by Cruise Automation technologyClick Watch

    The tech which could allow any car with an automatic gearbox to become self-driving

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.