Elimination of Khatami's supporters from "Islamic Councils" represents Khamenei's new counter-attack against Khatami

Last night, after a two-month dispute, the "Islamic Councils Elections Central Supervisory Board," declared as null and void the votes by the top five candidates in Tehran who belong to Khatami's faction, Abdollah Nouri, Saeed Hajjarian, Mohammad Atrianfar, Ibrahim Asgharzadeh and Ahmad Hakimi-pour.

It introduced new persons as members of the Tehran's city council who are essentially from Khamenei's faction. The action by the Central Supervisory Board represents a new counter-attack by Khamenei and his faction against Khatami's faction.

The extent to which the propaganda campaign by a number of Western circles about Khatami's victory in the "Islamic Councils" elections and their investment in Khatami's faction is unfounded and removed from reality, is once again laid bare.

The elimination of Khatami's men from the "Islamic Councils" in Tehran, simultaneous with the upcoming impeachment proceedings against the Minister of Islamic Culture and Guidance, the arrest and conviction of a number of pro-Khatami candidates and the upholding of the conviction of Tehran's former Mayor, reflect an unprecedented escalation of the clerical regime's internal feuding after the councils' elections.

In the resolution of its full session earlier in April, the National Council of Resistance announced that "owing to the acute political crisis and lack of any political solutions, two years into Khatami's presidency, a definite and violent showdown between the regime's various factions looms prior to the Presidential elections in May 2001."

The resolution also noted that "the current phase must be declared as the phase to overthrow the regime. This is particularly the case as the unraveling of the regime after a troika leadership emerged, has further activated the organized Resistance's social base which in conjunction with the National Council of Resistance of Iran, has sounded the death knells for the regime."

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
April 27, 1999

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