Iran News ...


06/02/11

Iran, Opposition Groups Dispute Cause of Activist's Death

Source: VOA

Iranian opposition websites say the daughter of a prominent Iranian dissident has died after a scuffle with security forces at her father's funeral, while government media say she died of a heart attack.
 


A poster for Iran's prominent activist and rights campaigner Haleh Sahabi with her father Ezzatollah in the background

Opposition websites say Haleh Sahabi, the daughter of Ezzatollah Sahabi and a prominent activist in her own right, fell to the ground in an altercation Wednesday.

The opposition website Kaleme says she was pushed to the ground as security forces tried to take a picture of her father out of her hands. The reports said she never got up after the fall.

But Iranian media say the 54-year old woman died of "heart problems." They also deny that there were any clashes between mourners and security forces.

The state-run news agency (IRNA) reports, though, that forces arrested five people who had intended to disrupt order, without elaborating.

The U.S. is urging Iran to investigate the circumstances surrounding Sahabi's death.

State Department spokesman Mark Toner says if reports that government security forces contributed to her death are accurate, then it demonstrates what he calls a "deplorable disregard for human dignity and respect" by Iranian authorities.

The elder Sahabi was jailed for criticizing the regime of Iran's Shah before the 1979 revolution and also for criticizing the hardline clerics in power after the revolution.

The younger Sahabi was jailed after the government crackdown on protesters after the 2009 election, which the opposition claims was "rigged."

Some information for this report was provided by AFP.
 

Related Stories:

Photos: arewell to the Fallen Haleh Sahabi - Today 1st of June 2011 , Haleh Sahabi's lifeless body was laid in her home to receive the last respects from her friends.

Iranian Activist Haleh Sahabi Dies In Scuffle At Her Father's Funeral - Haleh Sahabi, the daughter of Iranian dissident Ezzatollah Sahabi died from a heart attack after security forces descended upon her father's funeral. Mizan website, the news outlet associated with the Nationalist-religious Coalition wrote: "A security official tried to grab a photo of Mr. Sahabi that Haleh Sahabi was pressing against her chest. The force of his action and her resistance caused her to fall, and then she did not rise."

Iran: Daughter of Deceased Dissident Dies Following Attack During Father's Burial - Interference by security and plainclothes agents in the funeral of prominent Iranian political activist Ezatollah Sahabi, including beatings of mourners, led to the death of Sahabi's daughter Haleh, who suffered a fatal heart attack at the event today.

Ezzatollah Sahabi: 5 May 1930 - 31 May 2011 - Iranian opposition activist Ezatollah Sahabi, head of the reformist National-Religious Movement of Iran, died of stroke Tuesday in a Tehran hospital at the age of 81.

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