TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's top opposition leader called on Wednesday for a "deep change" in the country, in one of the most forceful calls to date for a major reform of the country's political system.

Mir Hossein Mousavi said on his Web site that the abuses the opposition say took place in the country's prisons following anti-government demonstrations indicate the need for a major overhaul.

"What is happening in prisons today clearly shows the need for a deep change in the country," he said, while scoffing at official attempts to portray the demonstrations over alleged election fraud in the June 12 presidential contests as the work of foreign powers.

"The biggest lies are to attribute the natural demand of the people for change to foreigners," Mousavi said.

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, and his supporters have used every occasion, including a mass trial of detainees, to depict the protesters as tools of foreign powers.

Mousavi said security forces and pro-government militia who suppressed peaceful demonstration of his supporters, were the ones serving the interests of Iran's enemies.

"People wanted and still want to raise their demands and protests peacefully and free from tension and those who turned peaceful gatherings into a bloody event serve interests of foreigners," the 5/8 1/8.?! 3/8)¼s )Website" captured"website">website quoted him as saying."

Mousavi has called the government of hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad "illegitimate," saying he stole the June 12 election through massive fraud.

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