' Whoever controls ME can rule world'

Report: Ahmadinejad predicted end of world hegemonic system.

ahmadinejad 311 (photo credit: AP)
ahmadinejad 311
(photo credit: AP)

Whoever controls the controls the world’s “energy and wealth,” Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejadwas quoted by IRNA as saying Saturday.

Ahmadinejad told an audience in Teheran, “Many countrieshave, unsuccessfully, tried during the past years to become a superpower in theregion but they failed as they play no role at the international equations.”

“It is now clear that whoever dominates the can rule the entire world too,” he added.

According to the Iranian official news agency, Ahmadinejadalso predicted the end of the world hegemonic system, as international problemshad not been resolved.

“In terms of economic issues, the world hegemonic systemreached a deadline while regarding political events, it failed to solve theexisting problems and is no longer powerful from the military aspect,” he wasquoted as saying.

In related news, meanwhile, put 16 opposition supporters detainedduring anti-government protests last month on trial Saturday on charges ofrioting and conspiring against the ruling system, according to 's statemedia.

The official IRNA news agency andstate Press TV said the defendants face charges ranging from plotting againstthe establishment to violating security regulations. Five of those on trial,including two women, were accused of "moharebeh," or defying God, acharge that could carry the death penalty, the semiofficial ISNA news agencyreported.

The new prosecutions, coupled withthe execution on Thursday of two men accused of involvement in anti-governmentgroups, could mark an attempt by Iran's hardline leaders to intimidate theopposition ahead of a new round of street demonstrations expected in February.

Those who stood trial Saturday —including a follower of the Bahai faith, an alleged communist and a studentactivist — were detained during anti-government demonstrations on December 27,when at least eight people were killed and hundreds more were arrested afterclashes between opposition activists and security forces. The violence was theworst since authorities launched a harsh crackdown immediately after 's disputedpresidential election in June.

The protesters have presented 'scleric-led establishment with its biggest challenge since the 1979 revolutiondespite a brutal crackdown that has left hundreds imprisoned.

IRNA quoted a prosecutor identifiedonly by the last name of Farahani as saying in court that some of thedefendants had confessed to spying, planning bomb attacks and damaging publicand private properties. He also said some of the defendants had sent videos onthe clashes between protesters and Iranian police to the "foreign hostilenetworks," IRNA reported.