Daily US Times, Kerman, Iran: At least 50 people had died and more than 200 others injured in a stampede at Qasem Soleimani’s burial procession, Iranian media report.
The incident delayed Soleimani’s burial. New burial time will be announced later, officials say.
Soleimani’s body was taken to his native city of Kerman for burial. Millions of people already blocked the streets of the city for funeral processions.
Soleimani had led the Quds force, which vastly operates outside of Iran and created a robust Iranian influence across the Middle East.
He was killed by a US airstrike in the outskirt of Baghdad Internation Airport and the killing sharply increased tensions across the region.
Soleimani was largely considered as the second most powerful person in Iran just next to the supreme leader Khamenei.
A sign of unity?
If anyone wants to compare Iran’s situation between seven weeks ago and now, it shows two clear sign. One, the escalation of anger and two, the unity of Iranians.
Just seven weeks ago, Iran had seen the biggest anti government protest in decades. Security forces killed anywhere between 330 and 1,500 protesters in more than 100 cities across the country.
But now millions of people came down to the streets, side by side to pay homage to their ‘hero’ Qasem Soleimani. Of course the feeling is running high in Iran and the government also launched effort to gather as many as people possible. Massive gathering would send Donald Trump a message that the government enjoys widespread support. It would also indicate that the Iranians will behind their leaders if any foreign aggression takes place and that any war would be long lasting and extremely costly.
Anger and tensions
Iranians are angered of Seleimani’s killing, whom the considered a ‘brave hero’ and their loving one. Thousands of citizens took to the street to express their mourn in death. They expressed their anger, chanted ‘death to America’ and seek revenge.
Trump has been warning Iran of further retaliation of the attack. He threatened if Iran retaliates, the US will target 52 Iranian sites, including cultural ones. Trump’s threat to attack cultural sites creates growing criticism, as it will be considered war crimes.
Referring the targets of 52 sites, Zarif said Trump “has to apologize, he has to change course.”
Trump previously said the US wasted seven trillion dollars in the Middle East, but the top Iranian diplomat said by killing Soleimani, Trump added another trillion.
“He is just making it worse for America … he has enraged the people of our region”, he added.
Iran announced no abide by of nuclear deal commitments
Iran announced they will no longer abide by any restrictions imposed by the 2015 nuclear deal.
The announcement came on Sunday followed by a cabinet meeting.
This step came as a consequence of killing top Iranian General Qasem Soleimani by a US airstrike.
Mr Soleimani was killed in early hours of Friday in the outskirt of Baghdad Internation Airport. He landed on the airport from Lebanon or Syria.
Tensions between Iran and the US raised a new high after the attack. Iran vowed ‘harsh revenge’ to the US.
Iran’s top military adviser to the supreme leader said yesterday their response would be military ‘against military sites’. President Rouhani said Americans will suffer ‘not also today, but also years to come’.