Date: January 13, 2010
Mir Hossein Mousavi’s 17th statement can be considered his most influential during the seven months since the green movement was born. After its release, prominent figures, groups and political factions reviewed and evaluated its contents from different angles and highlighted various aspects of the text.
The signatories of this statement – those who desire structural, democratic change; who support the rights of all citizens regardless of faith, ideals, ideologies, ethnicity, or gender; who also promote the separation of church and state – believe that [Mousavi’s 17th] declaration provides notable suggestions. A broad consensus regarding these recommendations can facilitate unity and coordination within the non-violent movement of the Iranian people and, like never before, isolate the authoritarian and aggressive regime. We believe that:
The timely release of the 17th statement has created a division – albeit temporarily – within the power block and delayed their project for instigating violence.
With this statement, Mousavi has yet again underlined his commitment to the people of Iran and their pluralistic movement, as well as his support for democratic change.
Mousavi avoided discussing generic and abstract topics in his statement, outlining instead a minimalist political platform with clear demands.
While prioritizing pluralistic movement of people of Iran, Mousavi has also shown that he is ready to negotiate with the establishment in order to advance the people’s demands. His indirect reference to the legal dismissal of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad through a parliamentary vote can be taken as a symbol of his democratic leanings. In a recent statement, Mehdi Karoubi has also stressed the importance of avoiding violence and abiding by non-violent methods. We, too, believe that democracy is [attainable] with the institutionalization of non-violent strategies in order to constrain and manage political strives and, as well as by increasing social participation in the political process. Experience has shown that political negotiation is an effective strategy on the uneven course of peaceful transition to democracy.
The most notable aspects of Mousavi’s statement were the four clauses related to free elections and the preconditions outlined to facilitate their organization: the release of political prisoners, freedom of the media and the press, as well as the right to form parties and hold assemblies.
Since the June elections, these demands have been repeatedly espoused by supporters of pluralism and democracy. We hope that Mir Hossein Mousavi’s proposal of these historic demands will create a context for their broader public recognition and extend cooperation between different divisions within the green movement, [particularly] among the Muslim Reformists and Secular-Democrat activists.
Mir Hossein Mousavi’s proposal of the ‘free election’ strategy as the most agreeable and cost-effective option for the transition to a democratic system emphasizes his intellectual flexibility and broad political views. Since the elections, Mehdi Karoubi has also played an invaluable role in expressing and spreading the democratic demands [of the movement], which has been strengthened with his courage and persistence
We support the essence of Mousavi’s statement, which provides a strategic, minimalist platform suitable to the current stage at which we find ourselves. We also believe that the people’s political-social movement will adopt a broad democratic strategy in the near future; a strategy that surpasses existing limitations and protects the civil rights of each Iranian, regardless of gender and ethnic background.
Ervand Abrahamian, Dariush Ashouri, Janet Afary, Toraj Atabaki, Kaveh Ehsani, Arzhang Asaad, Mohammad Eghtedari, Mehran Barati, Mehrzad Broujerdi, Ali Bno Azizi, Maziyar Behrouz, Homan Beigi, Asef Bayat, Misagh Parsa, Kamran Talatof, Nayereh Tohidi, Mohamad Tavakoli-Targhi, Ramin Jahanbegloo, Fatemeh Haghighatjoo, Bijan Hekmat, Mehdi Khanbaba Tehrani, Farhad Khosro Khavar , Fariba Davoudi Mohajer, Hamid Dehbashi, Toraj Daryayi, Ali Rakei, Nasrin Rahimiyeh, Ebrahim Soltani, Reza Siavashi, Hasan Shariatmadari, Ahmad Sadri, Hossein Ziaei , Kazem Alamdari, Mehdi Fatapour, Mansour Farhang, Mehrangiz Kar, Farhad Kazemi, Ahmad Karimi Hakak, Hossein Kamali, Azadeh Kian, Amir Hossein Ganj Bakhsh, Afshin Matin Asgari, Mehrdad Mashayekhi, Mansoor Moadel , Valentine Moghadam, Ali Akbar Mehdi, Ziba Mir Hosseini , Ali Mirsepassi, Abbas Milani, Farzaneh Milani , Arash Naraghi , Farzin Vahdat, Nader Hashemi , Hasan Yousefi Ashkevari.
ارواند آبراهامیان، داریوش آشوری، ژانت آفاری، تورج اتابکی، کاوه احسانی، ارژنگ اسعد، محمد اقتداری، مهران براتی، مهرزاد بروجردی، علی بنو عزیزی، مازیار بهروز، هومن بیگی، آصف بیات، میثاق پارسا، کامران تلطف، نیره توحیدی، محمد توکلی طرقی، رامین جهانبگلو، فاطمه حقیقتجو، بیژن حکمت، مهدی خانبابا تهرانی، فرهاد خسروخاور، فریبا داوودی مهاجر، حمید دباشی، تورج دریایی، علی راکعی، نسرین رحیمیه، ابراهیم سلطانی، رضا سیاوشی، حسن شریعتمداری، احمد صدری، حسین ضیائی، کاظم علمداری، مهدی فتاپور، منصور فرهنگ، مهرانگیز کار، فرهاد کاظمی، احمد کریمی حکاک، حسین کمالی، آزاده کیان، امیرحسین گنجبخش، افشین متین عسگری، مهرداد مشایخی، منصور معدل، والنتاین مقدم، علیاکبر مهدی، زیبا میرحسینی، علی میرسپاسی، عباس میلانی، فرزانه میلانی، آرش نراقی فرزین وحدت، نادر هاشمی، حسن یوسفی اشکوری