TEHRAN: Iran’s electoral watchdog accused the United States of giving opposition leaders $1 billion to topple the Islamic regime and promising them another $50 billion, reports said Wednesday.
The head of Guardians Council, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, charged that Washington had paid $1 billion to "the leaders of the sedition" during last year’s post-election unrest which rocked the regime.
"I have acquired documents showing that the Americans paid $1 billion to the sedition leaders through their Saudi agents who are active in regional countries," Jannati was quoted as saying by ILNA news agency.
Jannati said the Saudis, who spoke on behalf of the United States, told the opposition leaders that "if you can overthrow the establishment, we will pay another $50 billion."
"The leaders of the sedition staged riots with the help of Americans and they were sure that, with the help of the US, the revolution will collapse," he said.
The Guardians Council endorsed the result of Iran’s June 2009 presidential election which saw Mahmoud Ahmadinejad win a second four-year term.
The hardliner’s re-election has been disputed by opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, who say it was the outcome of a "fraudulent" poll.
Their accusations sparked widespread protests and unrest across Tehran and other cities, shaking the pillars of the regime.
Dozens of people were killed in clashes, hundreds were wounded and thousands arrested in the violence which continued for months.
Several top Iranian officials, including supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have blamed the United States and Britain for triggering the vote unrest.