Iran police arrest mourners

Revolutionary Guards to confront anti-clerics


“Hundreds gathered around Neda Agha-Soltan’s grave to mourn her death and other victims ... police arrested some of them ... dozens of riot police also arrived and tried to disperse the crowd,” a witness said.

Earlier, opposition leaders said they would attend the ceremony, defying a threat by Revolutionary Guards to break up the gathering. “(Defeated candidate) Mirhossein Mousavi arrived at Tehran’s Behesht-e Zahra cemetery to commemorate Neda Agha-Soltan and other victims,” said Ghalamnews, Mousavi’s website.

Mourners clung to his car, chanting “Mousavi we support you,” the witness said.

Iranian media have reported the deaths of several protesters following the vote. Rights groups say hundreds of people, including senior pro-reform politicians, journalists, activists and lawyers, have been detained since the election.

The head of Tehran’s Revolutionary Guards, Brigadier General Abdollah Araghi, had warned against any gathering.

“We are not joking. We will confront those who want to fight against the clerical establishment,” said Araghi, according to the semi-official Fars news agency on Wednesday.

Authorities had turned down a request by opposition leaders to hold a memorial ceremony on Thursday at Tehran’s Grand Mosala, a prayer location where tens of thousands can gather.

The presidential vote plunged Iran into its biggest crisis since the 1979 Islamic revolution and exposed deepening divisions in its ruling elite.

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