Hamas Leader Attends Raisi's Funeral In Tehran, Overseen By Ayatollah Khamenei

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by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, May 22, 2024 - 10:40 PM

Tens of thousands of Iranians have filled up Tehran's streets on Wednesday for a massive funeral procession for President Ebrahim Raisi and seven other officials who died in Sunday's helicopter crash.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei led funeral prayers for the deceased, which also includes foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian. "Oh Allah, we didn’t see anything but good from him," said Khamenei, reciting Islamic funeral verses.

WANA via Reuters

According an Al Jazeera correspondent who is present at 'Freedom Square' where memorial events are taking place, "The streets are completely closed to the traffic, [with] heavy security measures here, several security checkpoints, and you can see thousands and thousands of people are already pouring into this area."

Other cities also hosted memorial processions. The Associated Press details of the Khamenei-led prayers in Tehran:

He soon left and the crowd inside rushed to the front, reaching out to touch the coffins. Iran’s acting president, Mohammad Mokhber, stood nearby and openly wept during the service.

People then carried the coffins out on their shoulders, with chants outside of “Death to America!” They loaded them onto a semitruck-trailer for a procession through downtown Tehran to Azadi Square, or Freedom Square, where Raisi gave speeches in the past.

Delegations and foreign ministers from various countries were in attendance, including Turkey's vice president and even Taliban representatives, but among the more notable and controversial figures included Hamas’s political leader Ismail Haniyeh.

"I come in the name of the Palestinian people, in the name of the resistance factions of Gaza … to express our condolences," Haniyeh told the crowds.

Haniyeh at one point said he had heard the late president say that "the Palestinian issue" remains a central concern to all Muslims, which "must fulfil their obligations to the Palestinians to liberate their land".

He said that Raisi had described the Oct.7 attacks on Israel an "earthquake in the heart of the Zionist entity".

The bodies will later in the week be taken to South Khorasan province for additional memorial services, after which Raisi will be buried in his home city of Mashhad in the northeast the famous Shia pilgrimage site, the Imam Reza shrine.