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Dissident Iranian Cleric's Wife Buried Amid Heavy Security


The massive funeral ceremony of Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri in December

The massive funeral ceremony of Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri in December

The funeral of the widow of prominent dissident cleric Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri was held amid a heavy security presence in the holy city of Qom, RFE/RL's Radio Farda reports.

Mahsoltan Rabani, 83, died on March 27, nearly three months after her husband's death.

Their son, Ahmad, tried to explain to Radio Farda by phone the events at his mother's funeral on March 29 but had difficulty getting through.

"They keep disconnecting me," he said.

After several calls, he only managed to say that several people who attended the funeral were detained.

According to the opposition website Jaras, Rabani's body was taken by security forces and handed over to the family near the place she was to be buried in an effort to prevent a funeral procession.

Montazeri and Rabani's other son, Saeed, had previously told Radio Farda that the authorities had warned the family against holding a funeral service for their mother.

"It is such a pity that the regime has reached a point where it is even intimidated by the dead body of an 80-year-old woman," Saeed said.

Grand Ayatollah Montazeri was one of the architects of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 and is considered by many to be the spiritual father of Iran's opposition Green Movement. His funeral ceremony on December 21 drew hundreds of thousands of people, who chanted slogans against Iran's current government.
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