Steve Nolan — Daily Mail May 1, 2013
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was allegedly held for seven hours by the Revolutionary Guard on Monday and told to back down with claims that the regime defrauded voters at the last general election and allegations of fraud against political rivals.
According to WND.com, the President was returning from a book fair in Tehran when his security advisor was informed that he was requested to appear at the Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Hosseini Khamenei’s office on an urgent matter.
But three other cars are said to have joined the President’s convoy and contact was lost between him and his security vehicles.
Instead of being taken to the Supreme Leader’s office, he was reportedly taken to a secret Foreign Ministry office where he and his security team were disarmed and stripped of communications equipment.
A source told WND that Ahmadinejad was then forced to enter an office belonging to Hossein Taeb, the head of the Revolutionary Guards’ intelligence, while many of his associates across Tehran were questioned over the existence of alleged documents that would allegedly prove damaging to the country’s regime.
He was later released following questioning.
US and British diplomats in the area are said to be aware of the reports and are viewing them ‘with interest’.
‘It is potentially of considerable significance given the on-going internal political struggles as the election approaches,’ one diplomatic source said.
His alleged arrest came hours after a regime-run news outlet reported that Ahmadinejad had threatened to release recordings proving that voters in the 2009 Iranian elections were defrauded and ahead of the country’s general election next month.
He was reported to have warned associates that if his hand-picked successor to stand for the next election in June was not approved by the country’s Guardian Council, elected by the Ayatollah.
It is the latest development in the deteriorating relationship between Ahmadinejad and the Supreme Leader and feuds with political rivals which are said to have seen his position shift from a traditional conservative to right wing.
Ahmadinejad has also been involved in an ongoing power struggle with the Larijani family – a faction which holds several key seats of power in the Middle Eastern country.
One of the President’s allies, Saeed Mortazavi, was arrested back in February.
Although no official reason was given for his arrest, it followed the disclosure of a secret film by Ahmadinejad in Parliament, in which Mr. Mortazavi could be seen discussing an apparently fraudulent business deal proposed by Fazel Larijani, 49, the youngest of the five Larijani brothers.
Though President Ahmadinejad has long criticised the Larijani family for their apparent grip on power, the family say that they obtained their roles through legitimate means.
Ali Larijani, 54, is the head of Parliament and former top nuclear negotiator; another, Sadegh Larijani, 52, is an ayatollah who heads Iran’s judiciary.
The oldest brother, Mohammad-Javad Larijani, 61, is a Berkeley-educated mathematician, and one of the main theoreticians of the Islamic Republic’s political ideology.
Ali is expected to run for President in June’s elections.
Iran’s June 14 day at the polls is being billed as the most critical in the country’s history.
For the first time in more than two decades, instead of the two main factions, the election is likely to be contested from at least four.
Public opinion is said to be split ahead of the vote, with voters said to be in one of five camps; those that support the regime, those that support the current president, reformists who want full democratisation, boycotters angry at the contention surrounding the last election and floating voters.
The country’s last general election plunged the country into its deepest internal crisis for decades amid claims that the result was rigged to restore President Ahmadinejad to power for another term.
Tapes reportedly exist proving that the President’s tally was 16million and not the winning 24million that was officially announced.
Millions of Iranians took to the streets in protest after the results were published demanding a re-election.
Thousands were arrested and some were tortured and executed.