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RSF Raises Concern Over Mousavi and Wife

Iranian politicians, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Zahra Rahnavard

In a statement on Tuesday, the Paris-based organization Reporters Sans Frontières (RSF) expressed concern over one of the leaders of the Iranian dissident Green Movement, Mir Hossein Mousavi, and his wife, Zahra Rahnavard.

An exiled pro-Green Movement website, Kalemeh, reported on November 14 that Mousavi and Rahnavard have tested positive for COVID-19.

Per the Kalemeh report, the couple "were examined by a doctor at their home, where they are under house arrest, and their general state of health is good."

Mousavi, 78, and Rahnavard, 75, have been under house arrest since February 2011.

"The couple, in their seventies, are suffering from a variety of heart complications, in addition to enduring the hardships of arbitrary and illegal house arrest," the RSF statement read.

RSF emphasized that, contrary to what Iranian officials have told some UN agencies, Mousavi and Rahnavard have not contracted COVID-19 for "non-compliance with health protocols" or from their "daughters."

The Paris-based organization established that the only people with whom the elderly couple have constant contact are their guards and Ministry of Intelligence agents, who have occupied a part of the Mousavi's house.

Mousavi and a mid-ranking clergy, Mehdi Karroubi, were incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's primary challengers in the 2009 presidential election. The election's official outcome, declaring Ahmadinejad's victory, triggered widespread anti-regime protests that lasted more than two years.

Mousavi and Karroubi's followers took to the streets to protest, accusing Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps of "engineering" the election.

In February 2011, Iranian intelligence agents detained Karroubi and Mousavi, along with Rahnavard, and placed them under house arrest for calling on people to demonstrate in favor of what was called the "Arab Spring."