IRAN: In video, anger boils over at Friday sermon
Newly released video from Tehran shows crowds of angry opposition supporters reacting to a much-anticipated Friday sermon given by Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who called for the release of political prisoners but stopped short of a wholesale condemnation of the government's crackdown.
Rafsanjani is one of Iran's leading power brokers and a supporter of opposition leader Mir-Hossein Mousavi, but is widely considered more of a calculating politician than a risk-taker. But even as he urged police and security forces to "work within the framework of the law," unconfirmed reports appeared on the Internet of clashes between pro-government and opposition supporters.
Reactions posted on micro-blogging service Twitter reflected mostly disappointment that Rafsanjani had not taken a harder stance against government violence or offered a comprehensive power-sharing solution to the crisis.
"Very disappointed, nothing new, basically green light for the status quo," tweeted parsa4.
-- Meris Lutz in Beirut
Photo: Thousands gather for Rafsanjani's much-anticipated sermon today. Credit: Iranian Labor News Agency
Video: Angry protesters react to Rafsanjani's sermon. Credit: YouTube