Home News Supreme Leader says crowd supporting Raisi shows support for Iranian nation

Supreme Leader says crowd supporting Raisi shows support for Iranian nation

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Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Saturday that large numbers of mourners took to the streets of Iran’s major cities last week to mourn the death of the country’s late President Ebrahim Raisi, demonstrating widespread popular support for the Islamic Republic and its religious system of governance.

Khamenei had announced that the country would observe five days of mourning following President Obama’s death. Leahy63 years old, killed In a helicopter crash and Iran Hussein Amir Abdullahianand five such incidents last weekend.In recent days, videos on the Iranian news media showed large marches to honor the dead, and on Wednesday, Khamenei presided over Raisi’s funeral, with crowds gathering outside Tehran University to listen to condolences over loudspeakers.

“This mourning proves to the whole world the people’s loyalty to the president of the republic and all those who embody the principles of the Islamic revolution,” Lebanese news channel Al Mayadeen quoted Khamenei as saying on Saturday about Raisi, who had been considered a possible successor to the supreme leader.

“The solemn funerals witnessed by Iran prove that people are still alive,” the ayatollah added, according to Al Mayadeen, which has long closely covered Iran and the Iran-backed Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.

Iran’s state news agency IRNA also reported similar remarks by Khamenei, but did not quote him directly. Khamenei made the remarks at a memorial for Raisi and other victims at the Imam Khomeini Husseini Church, a major religious site in Tehran, where Khamenei often holds meetings.

The funeral of Raisi and the other victims began on Tuesday in Tabriz, the closest major city to the crash site in northwestern Iran. Their bodies were then taken to the holy city of Qom and then to Tehran for a funeral.

Video footage of the commemoration released by Iran’s Islamic Republic News Agency on Saturday showed a large crowd sitting cross-legged in an assembly hall, with the camera focusing on the faces of several Asian, African and European men in suits, said to be ambassadors and foreign officials who came to pay their respects.

Iranian state news media often highlight the presence of foreign dignitaries at memorial services in Iran as a show of international support, a move some analysts say is intended to counter narratives that portray Iran as a “pariah state” as its leaders are under heavy Western sanctions.

The country is at an extremely uneasy moment, dealing with a severe economic crisis on the one hand and, on the other, the Gaza war, which has unpredictable consequences for the region and has led to heightened tensions with its main regional rival, Israel.

During Mr. Raisi’s period of mourning, Iran’s leadership has tried to present a calm and orderly transition, quickly appointing First Vice President Mohammad Mokhbar as acting president and ordering early elections on June 28, as required by the constitution.

However Elections will be held Many foreign observers believe that popular support for the Islamic Republic of Iran and its system of governance is declining significantly.

Iran’s presidential and parliamentary elections typically draw high public participation, which leaders say is a sign of public support for the Islamic Republic. But turnout was much lower in the 2022 presidential election and this year’s parliamentary election, fueling critics’ arguments that many are turning away from what they see as an increasingly repressive government.

On Friday, Ayatollah Khamenei issued Drone footage on social media Photos showed large crowds packed onto a main thoroughfare to mourn Raisi, some holding long red, white and green flags of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

“The grand funeral for President Raisi sends a message of support to the Islamic Republic of Iran to the whole world and demonstrates the roots and strength of its people. This strength and power is rooted deep in Iranian society and the Iranian nation,” the ayatollah wrote on his account posted on X.

“Mr. Lacey continues to provide valuable service to the country even after his death.”

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