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Iranians Attempt to Mourn Neda; Mousavi Turned Back

News is starting to trickle out about the planned public mourning of Neda Agha-Soltan, whose death during election protests 40 days ago was broadcast around world on YouTube, turning her into an international symbol for the protest movement and the government’s heavy-handed response. Twitter’s #iranelection tag is the top trending topic. The LA Times reports that although Mousavi was turned back by security forces at Neda’s grave, that thousands, and possibly tens of thousands, of mourners have overwhelmed security forces who initially beat and arrested mourners at the cemetery. From the LA Times:

At first mourners were confronted by the security forces, who struck them with truncheons and arrested some in an attempt to bar them from gathering at Tehran’s Behesht Zahra cemetery, the country’s largest. The tree-lined streets leading to the graves of Agha-Soltan and others were blocked by riot police, the witness said.

The witness said the mourners also identified and violently confronted several plainclothes Basiji militiamen.

“Police, police, support us,” the mourners chanted. “God is great!”

But as the numbers mourners poured out of the nearby subway station and taxis along the highway, security forces retreated. One witness said police released detainees and began cooperating with the mourners, directing them to section 257 of the cemetery, where Agha-Soltan and others were buried. Mourners have been denied a permit to hold a ceremony in the city’s Grand Mossala mosque later today, but protesters have said they will try to come together near the site of the mosque anyway, and march along nearby streets if they are prevented from entering the site.

This recently tweeted video of mourners chanting, “Oh, Hossein! Mir-Hossein,” has been posted on YouTube.

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Obviously a developing story and lots of conflicting information out there; hopefully events will become more clear throughout the morning.

Update: Andrew Sullivan is tracking events and reliable Twitterers, and the NY Times Lede blog is also routinely updating Times coverage.

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One Response to “Iranians Attempt to Mourn Neda; Mousavi Turned Back”

  1. Internet & Democracy Blog » YouTube, Neda and the Revolution Says:

    […] Iranians Attempt to Mourn Neda; Mousavi Turned Back […]