- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 23, 2009

Human rights groups and Iran activists are organizing a massive “Global Day of Action” on Saturday, hoping to rally people in more than 60 cities in support of Iran’s democracy movement.

The rallies are to take place from Kabul to Kansas City, from Tokyo to San Francisco and include a march in Washington, from the local office of the United Nations to the national Mall, said Hadi Ghaemi, spokesman for the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.

Mr. Ghaemi said the demonstrations will be live-streamed to Iranians on YouTube and other Internet sites in hopes of encouraging them to persist in their rejection of disputed results in Iran’s June 12 presidential elections.

The Iranian government says the landslide victor was incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. However, hundreds of thousands of Iranians have turned out in the streets - risking arrest and even death at the hands of security forces - to decry the results as fraudulent and demand a new vote.

“This is to show them that the world is concerned and is standing with the Iranian people who are demanding their rights,” Mr. Ghaemi said.

A variety of organizations, including Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Reporters without Borders, are participating, according to the Web site united4iran.org.

Mr. Ghaemi said an Iranian-American singer, Dariush - whom Mr. Ghaemi said was a “combination of Bono and Sting” for Iranian audiences - would perform in Washington and footage of other demonstrations around the world would be shown.

No officials are being encouraged to attend to avoid giving the Iranian government ammunition to back its claims that the protests are being orchestrated by foreigners. Mr. Ghaemi said all those who support the Iranian cause are welcome to come as individuals.

• Barbara Slavin can be reached at .

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