Friday, June 11, 2010

Paris group announces human chain for June 12 anniversary

In a video posted to YouTube, the Paris chapter of Where Is My Vote announced its intention to organize a human chain of green-clad, masked protesters to mark the anniversary of the June 12 disputed election and honor the faceless political prisoners being held in the Islamic Republic's jails.

The short film shows the preparations for Saturday's event which will begin at the Mur de la Paix (Wall of Peace art installation, southeast of the Eiffel Tower) and extend to the Invalides at 2PM, June 12, 2010.

In a tongue-in-cheek reference to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's claim that the Islamic Republic is the freest democracy in the world and that any legal group can obtain a permit to stage a demonstration, the video begins with one of the group's members going to the Paris police headquarters. He exits a short while later, holding up his fingers in a V sign and brandishing a permit for Saturday's protest. 'It says we can do everything. Wear masks, make a human chain, expose Ahmadinejad,' says the organizer.

'Who said it was difficult to get a permit in France?' asks the cameraman. 'Ahmadinejad,' responds his associate. 'They said, wear masks, hold hands, and go all the way from the military school to Invalides.'

View Paris - protest - 2:00 PM - 12 June 2010 in a larger map

The organizers are then shown distributing and posting fliers around the city -- from crepe shops to rug stores to telephone booths.

Where Is My Vote has been particularly active over the past year and has launched spectacular protests. In the lead-up to the February 11 anniversary of the revolution, they splattered the IRI embassy with green paint and famously heckled a garden party organized by the Islamic Republic's embassy which led His Excellency the ambassador to get into a scuffle with French police. In August, they covered the windows of the Iran Air office with stickers bearing slogans against the Islamic regime:

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