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Author Topic:   Feast of Fire (Chahar Shanbeh Soori) News
posted March 19, 2001 10:57     Click Here to See the Profile for Vatandoost   Click Here to Email Vatandoost     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Noisy celebrations in Iran

BBC World
March 14, 2001

There have been noisy and in places unruly street celebrations in Iran to mark an annual festival that dates back to pre-Islamic times.

State-run media said at least fifteen people had been injured in Tehran alone as people jumped over bonfires and let off fireworks to celebrate Chahar Shanbe Suri, a festival marking the end of the Persian year.

The festival has its origins in the ancient Zoroastrian religion, and Muslim clerics have tried to discourage it.

The BBC's Tehran correspondent says some youths let off dangerous home-made explosives, using the festival as an opportunity to vent their frustration at restrictions on social freedoms.

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posted March 19, 2001 11:00     Click Here to See the Profile for Vatandoost   Click Here to Email Vatandoost     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hundreds of families looking for their arrested beloved ones

SMCCDI News Service
March 14, 2001

Hundreds of families are looking for their arrested beloved in connection of the unrests during the yesterday's "Feast of Fire".

Reports from across Iran are stating about the brutality of the Bassidj and Foreign mercenaries of the regime in cracking down on the late gatherings of yesterday evening.

In Tehran, Rasht, Khrorram-Abad, Karadj, Esfahan and Tabriz hundreds of participants were beaten or arrested by the Defensors of God's Faith who at several occasions aggressed kids of 12 years and elder subjects of the first "Republic of God's on the Earth".

The brutality of the militians, in several places, was at a level that many valiant youth chose to stay and fight against these militians, beating women laying on the ground, by knowing the meaning of their
rebellion against such barbarian injustices.

In Sannandaj, as like as Mahabad, the regime's forces imposed the use of violence to hundreds of helpless people gathered to celebrate in the "Shohada" (former Farah) avenue the Traditional and National Event cherished by all Iranians. The cruelty of the regime's mercenaries and Bassidj members beating on everyone brought the residents of the Town to the level of rage by attacking several official buildings, such as, the Bank e Melli by smashing their windows.

In Karadj, tens of young participants attacked the militians in front of the "Shar-passand" garrison to try to make escape several of their arrested colleagues. Tens of them but as well several militians were
injured in a unfair and un-balanced fight and witnesses are testifying about the way clubs and chains were hitting the protesters.

In Tehran, over 2500 participants have been arrested, in addition to tens of wounded in Shahrak-Gharb, Rey and Tehran-Pars areas who will be, also, arrested after being released by the Medical authorities.

At least and by the number of full buses of arrested participants, followed by several SMCCDI members, about 1700 arrested have been brought to the following detention centers:

- The LEF Detention facility in the "12 Farvardin" avenue of Tehran, located near the "Enghelab" square (former 24 Esfand).

- The North Tehran Military Head-Quarter detention center located in the "Turkamanistan" avenue.

- The West Tehran Military Head-Quarter detention center located in the "Zandjan" avenue

In these conditions it was of the most astonishing to see a AFP report quoting some of the regime's sources who tried to qualify the yesterday's protests as isolated cases created by couple of drunks, from one side, and to read the article of Mr. Hassan Shariatmadari, published in the Kayhan
newspaper, stating that the Iranian youth was intending to raise thousands of fires, across Iran, to celebrate the "Eid e Ghadir e Khom" from the other side.

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posted March 19, 2001 11:01     Click Here to See the Profile for Vatandoost   Click Here to Email Vatandoost     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Iranians Mark Their New Year With Tradition

The Los Angeles Times
March 14, 2001

Thousands gathered Tuesday evening at an Orange County beach to mark the Iranian new year with a ceremony dating back centuries.

Chaharshanbeh Souri, literally the "Wednesday Celebration," takes place on the last Tuesday night of the Iranian year, which changes over with the spring equinox: March 20 this year.

The annual celebration held at Corona Del Mar draws thousands of people from San Diego to the San Fernando Valley. At sunset, small fires are lit, and people of all ages jump over the flames, reciting a Persian verse that translates to: "Your redness [health] to me, my yellowness [sickness] to you." Jumping over the fire, according to tradition, rids one of illness and misfortune.

The celebration has its roots in the Zoroastrian religion practiced in Iran for almost 3,000 years. But the theocracy running the country since 1979 has denounced Chaharshanbeh Souri as un-Islamic.

Nonetheless, popular sentiment prevailed, and in recent years, Iran's Interior Ministry has tacitly allowed the celebration to take place, issuing fire safety guidelines a few days beforehand.

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