Last Updated: Friday, 11 July 2014, 13:14 GMT

Iran: Details of the funeral of Darioush (Daryush) Foruhar (Forouhar, Forohar) including where and when it was held; whether attendees distributed leaflets; presence of Pasdaran, or other security forces, and whether they attacked any of the attendees; whether authorities video-taped the proceedings; whether authorities took any action against supporters of Foruhar, or the Nation of Iran party (Hezb-e Mellat-e Iran, the National Front, the Iranian Nation Party, the Iranian National Party, Party of the People of Iran), immediately following the funeral

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 8 September 2000
Citation / Document Symbol IRN35284.E
Reference 5
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Iran: Details of the funeral of Darioush (Daryush) Foruhar (Forouhar, Forohar) including where and when it was held; whether attendees distributed leaflets; presence of Pasdaran, or other security forces, and whether they attacked any of the attendees; whether authorities video-taped the proceedings; whether authorities took any action against supporters of Foruhar, or the Nation of Iran party (Hezb-e Mellat-e Iran, the National Front, the Iranian Nation Party, the Iranian National Party, Party of the People of Iran), immediately following the funeral, 8 September 2000, IRN35284.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3df4be4310.html [accessed 14 July 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Several sources reported the murders of Darioush and Paravaneh Foruhar as having occurred on 22 November 1998 (AFP 30 Nov. 1998; DPA 26 Nov. 1998; The Toronto Star 27 Nov. 1998). However, other sources wrote that their bodies were found in their home on 22 November 1998 (The New York Times 23 Nov. 1998; AP 22 Feb. 1999), while others wrote that the killings occurred on the weekend of 21-22 November 1998 (AFP 10 Feb. 1999; The New York Times 6 Dec. 1998; Los Angeles Times 26 Mar. 1999). IRNA reported that the Interior Ministry had issued a statement stating that the bodies were found on 22 November 1998, but that the killings had occurred several hours earlier (The New York Times 23 Nov. 1998).

Their funeral was held on 26 November 1998 (DPA 26 Nov. 1998; The Orange County Register 27 Nov. 1998; The News International 9 Dec. 1998; The Toronto Star 27 Nov. 1998). The number of persons reported as attending the funeral ranged from "more than 1,000" to "tens of thousands" (Sunday Telegraph 12 Mar. 2000; The Orange County Register 27 Nov. 1998; The Toronto Star 27 Nov. 1998; DPA 26 Nov. 1998; The New York Times 6 Dec. 1998). The mourners chanted slogans and carried large photos of the two deceased (The Orange County Register 27 Nov. 1998; The Toronto Star 27 Nov. 1998). DPA reported that:

During the funeral ceremony, the song "Ey, Iran", considered by liberals and nationalists as the main national anthem, was played and most of the participants were carrying the green-white-red flag as a tag but without the Allah (God) sign which is the official of the Islamic Republic.

A number of police forces were stationed in the Behesht-e-Zahra cemetery to prevent clashes between the liberal mourners and hardliners but the ceremony ended peacefully and there was no need for any police interference. ...

Prior to his funeral, more than 10,000 people on Thursday attended a rally in the Iranian capital Teheran in support of Foruhar.

What was initially scheduled to be a mourning ceremony in downtown Teheran turned spontaneously into a rally with the demonstrators shouting for freedom and implementation of the nation's will.

Although the rally ended with a mass prayer headed by senior liberal opposition figure, Yadollah Sahabi, and without any serious confrontations, police had to block the streets in the crowded downtown district of the capital for preventing any disorder.

The demonstrators also condemned "fundamentalism", referring to radical Islamic hardliners who consider the liberal opposition as secular and opponents to the Islamic system (26 Nov. 1998).

The Interior Minister is quoted by Iranian radio as having said that an "illegal demonstration" followed the funeral and that "The Law Enforcement Force dealt with the unruly elements after Foruhar's funeral procession and violating the law is open to prosecution regardless of which group or person commits the offence" (Voice of the Islamic Republic of Iran 28 Nov. 1998). The Orange Country Register reported that the funeral procession "turned into a rally ... with tens of thousands of mourners pledging to continue his struggle for freedom" (27 Nov. 1998).

AFP reported that a memorial service took place on 30 November 1998 in which police

prevented around 1,000 people seeking to march in Tehran ... [after] the mourners started to march in the streets after demanding an end to "repression and insecurity," but police immediately ordered the crowd to disperse.

"Security, security," chanted the crowd, which also demanded the arrest of the murderers. ...

Hundreds of liberal dissidents, academics and critics of the regime close to various opposition movements were among the several thousand people who attended the service.

Mahmud Doai, a moderate cleric close to President Mohammad Khatami, also attended the ceremony to pay respect on behalf of the president.

Foruhar's son and daughter, Arash and Parastu, thanked the audience for "coming to express their loyalty to their parents and Iran" (30 Nov. 1998).

No information on whether authorities video-taped the proceedings could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate. However, sources reported that the Foruhars were "closely watched" by Iranian intelligence and security services (The News International 9 Dec. 1998; Los Angeles Times 26 Mar. 1999; Zanan Dec. 1999; Country Reports 1998 1999, section 1. a; The New York Times 6 Dec. 1998). The New York Times reported Iranian activists as saying that the Foruhar home was "under round-the-clock surveillance by Iran's Ministry of Information, the country's intelligence service" (ibid.). Zanan referred to associates of Foruhar who said that he "knew his home had been bugged and his telephone had been traced" (Dec. 1998).

For information on the commemoration, on 31 December 1998, of the fortieth day of the Foruhars' murders, please consult IRN32822.E of 27 September 1999.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References

Agence France Presse (AFP). 10 February 1999. "La fille d'un couple d'opposants assassinés demande une enquête internationale." (NEXIS)

_____. 30 November 1998. "Iranian Police Prevent March to Protest Murder of Opposition Leader." (NEXIS)

Associated Press. 22 February 1999. "More Suspects Reported Arrested in Killings of Dissidents." (NEXIS)

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 1998. 1999. United States Department of State. Washington, DC.

Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA). 26 November 1998. "Slain Iranian Opposition Leader Laid to Rest." (NEXIS)

Los Angeles Times. 26 March 1999. John Daniszewski. "A Plot That Backfired on Killers ... " (NEXIS)

The News International [Karachi]. 9 December 1998. "Who is Behind the Murder of Dissidents in Iran?" [Accessed 9 Dec. 1998]

The New York Times. 6 December 1998. Douglas Jehl. "Two Attacks Cause Worry to the Critics of Iran Rulers." (NEXIS)

_____. 23 November 1998. "Opposition Leader in Teheran and His Wife are Found Slain." (NEXIS)

The Orange County Register [Santa Ana, California]. 27 November 1998. "World Briefly." (NEXIS)

Sunday Telegraph [London]. 12 March 2000. Julian West. "International: Iran May Try Rafsanjani Over Murders." (NEXIS)

The Toronto Star. 27 November 1998. Martin Regg Cohn. "Iranian Dissidents Defiant to the End." (NEXIS)

Voice of the Islamic Republic of Iran [Tehran, in Persian]. 28 November 1998. "Interior Minister Comments in News Conference on 'Recent Bitter Events'." (BBC Worldwide Monitoring 29 Nov. 1998/NEXIS)

Zanan [Tehran]. December 1998. "A Review of Serial Murders." [Accessed 6 Sept. 2000]

Additional Sources Consulted

IRB databases

LEXIS-NEXIS

REFWORLD

World News Connection (WNC)

Three non-documentary sources contacted did not provide information on the requested subject.

Internet sites including:

International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX)

NetIran Website. Encompassing IRNA 1993-98, Iran News 1993-99, Tehran Times 1995-98.

RFE/RL Iran Report [Prague].

Search engines including:

HotBot

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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