US calls on Iran to release opposition leaders under house arrest

WASHINGTON, The US Department of State on Thursday called on Iran to release the detained presidential candidates who have been under house arrest since 2009.

In a statement released to mark the seven-year anniversary of the detention of 2009 Iranian presidential election candidates Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Mousavi, as well as Mousavi’s wife and women’s rights advocate Zahra Rahnavard, the Department of State said, “The continued house arrest of these three individuals contradicts Iran’s international obligations including those under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to provide minimum fair trial guarantees and not to subject citizens to arbitrary arrest or detention.”

It added, “The United States calls on Iran to respect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all individuals in Iran consistent with its international obligations, including ensuring the fundamental right of peaceful freedom of expression and the right to participate in civil society and in the political process without fear of arbitrary arrest and detention or denial of fair trials.”

“We join the international community in condemning the continued arbitrary detention of these three individuals without charges or fair trials and in calling for their immediate release and for the release of all prisoners of conscience unjustly detained in Iran,” the statement concluded.

Source: Emirates News Agency