February 6, 2013 - 12:24 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - A once-feared prosecutor at the center of a row between two of Iran's most powerful figures was freed from two days' detention on Wednesday, February 6 adding a new twist to a political drama Iran watchers expect to intensify before presidential polls in June, Reuters said.
Neither the arrest nor the release of the former judicial official, Saeed Mortazavi, have been accompanied by any public explanation from the authorities.
But Mortazavi was detained shortly after his political ally, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, publicly accused Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani's family of attempting to use their prominence for financial gain.
Its timing suggested it was linked to the accusations of corruption and it was seen as the most recent indication that Ahmadinejad has lost favour with Iran's most powerful authority, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
On Wednesday, state news agency IRNA reported that Mortazavi had been released from prison, citing an anonymous source. It was unclear whether Mortazavi had posted any bail, IRNA said.
Mortazavi was suspended from his judicial post in 2010 over the torture deaths of three protesters in custody after the 2009 presidential elections, which the opposition said were rigged in Ahmadinejad's favour, bringing huge crowds into the streets.
Labour Minister Abdolreza Sheikholeslami, who was dismissed by parliament on Sunday, appointed Mortazavi last year to head the social security office, against lawmakers' wishes.