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Lebanese Intellectuals Support Iran's Green Movement

Ninety Lebanese intellectuals have signed a petition in support of Iran's opposition Green Movement, RFE/RL's Radio Farda reports.

The statement is a rare show of public support by Arab intellectuals for the Green Movement.

Author and journalist Hazem al-Saqiyah, a signatory to the petition, told Radio Farda that "as a democrat I find what [the Green Movement is] calling for resembles what I would like to see happening. It is the same battle we are fighting here in Lebanon."

Saqiyah said Iran's regional influence comes from its money, not its model of Islamic government.

Referring to the petition, he said that none of the letter's signatories are supporters of the militant Islamic group Hizballah, which is known to receive money from the Iranian government.

Saqiyah also criticized the Islamic republic's government as being out of touch with the Iranian people.

"The street in Iran is very pluralistic, [it shows] how influenced it is by globalization and contact with the outside world. [But] the regime is very ideological, very narrow minded, very one-dimensional. And this is the big contrast between them."