Tehran’s streets were packed with black-clad mourners Monday as a sea of people turned out to pay their respects to Qasem Soleimani, the Iranian general killed by a US drone strike in Baghdad last week.
Soleimani was assassinated in a US drone strike in Iraq on Friday on the orders of President Donald Trump.Iran has allegedly offered an $80 million bounty on US President Donald Trump for the death of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani ,mirror.co.uk said in a report.
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei led prayers and at one point was seen weeping.
Iran has vowed “severe revenge” for the death of Soleimani and on Sunday pulled back from the 2015 nuclear accord.
Soleimani, 62, headed Iran’s elite Quds Force, and was tasked with protecting and boosting Iran’s influence in the Middle East.
The US saw him as a terrorist, and President Trump said Soleimani was plotting “imminent” attacks on US diplomats and military personnel.
In Iran, Soleimani was hailed as a national hero and widely considered the second most powerful man in the country behind Supreme Leader Khamenei.
But not all Iranians are as distressed about the general’s death as the mourners who lined Tehran’s streets, says BBC Middle East Editor Jeremy Bowen.
Soleimani was a hardliner and a dominant force in a regime that shot dead scores of protesters at the end of 2019. He also spent vast sums building up alliances and militias in Lebanon, Yemen, Iraq and Syria at a time when US sanctions are impoverishing many Iranians, our correspondent says.
Some people cried, while others clutched pictures of the late commander. Mourners passed Soleimani’s coffin over their heads and “death to America” chants were heard.
His daughter Zeinab Soleimani warned the US that it faced a “dark day”.
“Crazy Trump, don’t think that everything is over with my father’s martyrdom,” she said.
Soleimani has been hailed a martyr and a hero inside Iran, especially due to his work in the fight against ISIS. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country’s ultimate political and religious authority, was photographed praying over Soleimani’s body during the funeral ceremony alongside President Hassan Rouhani.
General Ismail Qaani — Soleimani’s longtime lieutenant and his successor as Quds leader — was seen crying over his coffin.
Sources : BBC, CNN, Mirror,Indiatoday