Khatami nominates one of the most criminal religious judges as Minister of Intelligence
-Younessi's selection, an effort to overcome Intelligence Ministry's chaos and break out of "the political murders" crisis

Mohammad Khatami, the mullahs' president, yesterday introduced to the Majlis Ali Younessi as his choice as the Minister of Intelligence. Younessi is one of the most criminal religious judges and officials of the clerical regime over the past 20 years.

Mr. Massoud Rajavi, President of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, described the dismissal of Dorri Najafabadi and his replacement by Ali Younessi as the outcome of a dirty deal between Khatami and Khamenei.

Mr. Rajavi added: A notorious executioner like Younessi who has had an active role in the execution of tens of thousands of political prisoners, particularly the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988, is a hundred times more criminal than Dorri Najafabadi. Khatami, therefore, does not oppose and has never been concerned with opposing suppression, torture, execution and the daily murders committed by the clerical regime's intelligence apparatus.

In changing the Intelligence Minister, the ruling clerics seek to break the deadlock over the recent wave of political killings. The mullahs also hope that with Younessi at the helm, the regime's can overcome the confusion and chaos clouding the intelligence apparatus. Khamenei's confidants describe this change of posts as "a change for the better" particularly since the details of the murders will continue to remain concealed, NCR President noted.

Mr. Rajavi said: If Khatami were in the least honest about his rhetoric about the "rule of law" and the "civil society," he would not have been content with anything less than the dissolution of the Intelligence Ministry, this organ of suppression, torture and espionage. As far as the Iranian people and Resistance are concerned, we continue to demand that an international fact-finding mission be dispatched to Iran to follow up and identify the perpetrators and masterminds of the recent wave of political murders. The representatives of the Iranian Resistance are prepared to accompany this mission.

Last week, while accepting Dorri Najafabadi's resignation, Khatami described the Intelligence Ministry henchmen as "dear colleagues," "guardians of revolutionary values, national security and the rights and respects of citizens."

Younessi's criminal record include the following:

1. At the outset of Khomeini's reign, Younessi was appointed as a religious judge in Qom.

2. Upon the invitation of Mohammad Hossein Beheshti, then the Minister of Justice, Younessi was subsequently appointed as head of Tehran's Revolutionary Court branch. In this capacity, he sentenced to death many political prisoners.

3. He then was appointed as the head of the second branch of the Revolutionary Court and the religious judge in the armed forces. He had an active role in the arrest of dissidents within the military and executed many of them.

4. Simultaneously, he was in charge of the political-ideological bureau in the Revolutionary Komitehs, one of the regime's main organs of suppression during the 1980s.

5. Younessi actively cooperated with mullah Mohammad Mohammadi Rayshahri, the regime's first Minister of Intelligence, in the founding of the ministry in the early 1980s. He established extensive contacts with former elements of the shah's secret police, SAVAK, to use their experience in the formation of the Intelligence Ministry.

6. Younessi was involved in the planning and foundation of the Judicial Organization of the Armed Forces in 1986.

7. He was Khomeini's representative in the military's Counter-Intelligence Department in 1986. He also represented the Deputy Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces in the military's Counter-Intelligence Department in 1988. In this capacity, he once again embarked upon an extensive purge of the military personnel and ordered the arrest and execution of dissident officers.

8. As a religious judge, Younessi was directly involved in the so-called trial and execution of political prisoners during the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in summer 1988. Along with the members of the "Death Commission" -- Davoud Lashgari, mullah Nayyeri, Nasserian (Moghaissi), and Ismaeel Shoushtari (presently Khatami's Justice Minister) -- Younessi sent group after group of political prisoners before the firing squads in Evin and Gohardasht prisons, respectively in Tehran and Karaj. In Gohardasht prison, he personally separated prisoners condemned to death and took them to the gallows or in front of the firing squads.

9. He was Tehran's General Prosecutor from September 1988 to 1993. In this period, he was responsible for the execution of many prisoners.

10. Younessi was appointed as the Head of the Judicial Organization of the Armed Forces since 1993. In this post, he sentenced hundreds of dissident and pro-Mojahedin personnel to death.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
February 18, 1999

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