Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Clashes in Isfahan

Police clashed with mourners today at a memorial service in Isfahan for Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri. The mourners were observing the third day of Montazeri’s death, an important day of mourning, along with the seventh day, in Iranian tradition. Ayatollah Montazeri was one of the fiercest critics of the Iranian government. More than 50 people were arrested during today’s clashes.

The seventh day of Montazeri’s death coincides with Ashura, one of Shia holiest days, the anniversary of martyrdom of Imam Hossein, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad. In modern times Ashura has carried a political overtone, a symbol of just struggle against tyranny. In 1978, Ashuar became an occasion for the largest anti-shah demonstrations in Iran, arguably the turning point for anti-shah movement in the country. This year's Ashura falls on Sunday 27 December. The coincidence of Ashura with the seventh day of Montazeri's death is expected to give rise to large-scale anti-government demonstrations throughout Iran.


Anonymous said...

have somebody seen those clashes?
is there any Videos, Fotos avialable like previous ones ?

CTRL-C/CTRL-V from opposition website ist not serious.

Anonymous said...

Not much of a big deal, people in Iran are (Thank God) getting used to demonstrations like in Europe for every simple thing.

As long as people do not exagerrate in reactions, then let demos take place.

starting to develop a tollerance for opposition, is the biggest achievement of last year in Iran.

God Bless Iran and Iranians. May God protect Iran from Enemies, Lies and Drought as Dariush the Greate once prayed

Nader Uskowi said...

Anon 1: There are videos available on YouTube.

Anon 2: You are making a very important point. The government has opted to tolerate demonstrations to some degrees, meaning occasional attacks and targeted arrests.

Mark Pyruz said...

Anon 4:14:
I've searched the web and made the same inquiries. To date, I've only found a trio of purported YouTube videos and no photos depicting IRIPF crowd dispersal operations. (Mostly close-up shots of police barricades.)

Not saying they're not taking place. But you're right, there isn't the same level of previous evidence.

There is an unverified report in the CSM of a a state of emergency being declared in Isfahan and a request for military assistance (which would be unprecedented for the post-election situation). However, other than this one report, I've seen no evidence to support it.

Even so, Sunday (Ashura) is the next big day for possible country-wide confrontations between the IRIPF/Basij and (now radicalized) anti-establishment demonstrators.