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Iran Cleric Receives Jail Sentence

  • VOA News

FILE - Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri sits during a gathering for Eid al-Fitr prayers in Qom, Oct. 1, 2008. Clerics from left are Mojtaba Lotfi, Abas Ali Fateh, and Montazeri's son Ahmad.

FILE - Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri sits during a gathering for Eid al-Fitr prayers in Qom, Oct. 1, 2008. Clerics from left are Mojtaba Lotfi, Abas Ali Fateh, and Montazeri's son Ahmad.

The son of a late Iran revolutionary was sentenced Sunday to six years in prison.

Ahmad Montazeri, 60, whose father is Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, was convicted by Iran's Special Clerical Court in the holy city of Qom after “acting against the national security [and] releasing a classified audio file,” the ISNA news agency reported.

Reports say Montazeri released audio recorded at the end of the country's 1988 war with Iraq in which his father condemned the execution of thousands of prisoners.

Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri died in 2009. He was the right-hand man to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini known as the father of Iran’s Islamic revolution.

The elder Montazeri was one of the few leaders who spoke out against the execution of thousands of political dissidents known as the People's Mujahideen of Iran (MEK).

MEK was a political group that had sided with Saddam Hussein during the war between Iraq and Iran.

Iran’s justice minister Mostafa Pourmohammadi, allegedly featured on the audio file, said he did not regret the killings.

“We are proud to have carried out God’s commandment with regard to the [MEK] and to have stood with strength and fought against the enemies of God and the people,” Pourmohammadi said, according to the Tasnin news agency.

Ahmad Montazeri has 20 days to appeal the verdict.

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