Iran's feared Revolutionary Guards have set up a network of secret prisons after the leadership issued a set of orders to prepare for a security crisis following yesterday's presidential election, according to Western diplomatic sources.
The security preparations have been put in place as it emerged that the most moderate candidate in the field of seven to replace President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was attracting a wave of support.
Western diplomatic sources told the Daily Telegraph the intelligence division of the Revolutionary Guards had established detention facilities to detain anti-government activists and prevent them from rallying at the presidential election contest.
"The regime is determined that there will be no repeat of the widespread anti-regime protests that followed the last election," said a senior Western intelligence official.
The Iranian regime was caught off-guard by the severity of the protests following the disputed presidential contest four years ago that resulted in Ahmadinejad winning a second term. An internal document from the office of the Supreme Leader passed to the Daily Telegraph contains stern instructions to the security forces to thwart attempts by "enemies" to undermine the leadership.
Observers reported that Hassan Rohani, a cleric who is running against an array of candidates loyal to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, could force a second round run-off vote next week. Polls were due to close today at 1.30am New Zealand time.