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Leading Iranian Reformist Party Member Arrested

Participation Front leader Ali Shakurirad
Participation Front leader Ali Shakurirad
A senior leader of the recently banned Islamic Iran Participation Front has been arrested in Tehran "for reasons related to national security," RFE/RL's Radio Farda reports.

Tehran Prosecutor Abbas Jafari-Dolatabadi announced the arrest of Participation Front leader Ali Shakurirad on October 13.

Arash Ghafouri, a member of the Participation Front living in the United States, told Radio Farda that Shakurirad was summoned to court on October 12 to "give some explanations."

Ghafouri said Shakurirad did not return home and his whereabouts are unknown.

Ghafouri said the main reason Shakurirad was summoned for questioning and detained is because of what he recently wrote on his personal website in response to Iran's chief prosecutor, Gholamhossein Mohseni-Ejei.

Mohseni-Ejei announced last week that two parties -- the Islamic Iran Participation Front and Mujahedin of the Islamic Revolution -- have been banned by a court and can no longer continue their political activities.

Shakurirad responded on his website that the Islamic Iran Participation Front is a legally registered party, has never been tried in any court, and no one has the right to curtail its political activities.

Shakurirad wrote on his website that Mohseni-Ejei's claim that the Participation Front has been legally banned is "a lie" and "a judicial disgrace."

The Islamic Iran Participation Front was formed in 1997 after the election of reformist President Mohammad Khatami. Ali Shakurirad was a parliament member during Khatami's presidency.

Sixteen leading members of the Islamic Iran Participation Front are reportedly currently in jail.