Wild celebrations erupt in Iran after President's death as women bare flesh and drink alcohol while fireworks are set off in the street

Wild celebrations erupt in Iran after President's death as women bare flesh and drink alcohol while fireworks are set off in the street

WATCH: Nigel Farage SLAMS West's 'APPEASING' of Iran - 'How did we get this so wrong?'

GB News
James Saunders

By James Saunders

Published: 21/05/2024

- 18:32

Despite a thousands-strong turnout of mourners, some dissident Iranians were pictured reacting with glee to the news

Rebellious Iranians have taken to the streets to celebrate after their President, Ebrahim Raisi, was killed in a helicopter crash on Sunday - despite declarations from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that Iran will observe five days of state mourning.

Thousands of black-clad mourners were pictured in cities across the country as Raisi's body - alongside those of others who died in the crash - was carried in a casket through the city of Tabriz.

Locals carried posters bearing images of the President, Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, the Friday prayer leader of Tabriz city, and a string of other officials who were also killed.

But despite the turnout, some Iranians were pictured reacting with glee to the news.

Women celebrating/fireworks in the streets/poster of Raisi

Women were seen toasting the death of President Raisi


IRGC members holding Raisi's casket

President Raisi's casket was seen being held aloft by members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps


Footage of the apparent dissidence went viral online

The daughters of Minoo Majidi shared videos to social media toasting the President's death - in the face of official guidance.

Madjidi was among hundreds shot dead by Iranian forces during protests which rocked the country in the aftermath of the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody - who herself opposed mandatory hijabs for women in the country.

Then, two more women, Mersedeh Shahinkar and Sima Moradbeigi, recorded themselves smiling and dancing in response to the news Raisi's helicopter had spiralled into a hillside in the northwest of the country.


Mourners in Tabriz, Iran

Thousands of mourners turned out in the streets of Tabriz, Iran


Shahinkar had been blinded in the 2022 protests, while Moradbeigi had lost the use of an arm after an armed guard shot her elbow to pieces from point-blank range.

A litany of social media footage - though unverified - appeared to show Iranians setting off fireworks in the streets of capital Tehran in celebration.

And around the world, more rebels were seen waving the pre-revolutionary flag of Iran, which features a golden lion at its centre - the flag, last used during the reign of the last Shah, represents a sign of protest against the current regime.

But back in Iran, there was little of the emotional rhetoric that accompanied the death of Qasem Soleimani, a senior commander of the elite Revolutionary Guards killed missile in 2020 in Iraq by an American missile, whose funeral drew huge crowds of mourners, weeping with sorrow and rage.

And in Yemen, Iran-backed Houthi Rebels laid wreaths in Raisi's memory.

Houthi wreath for Raisi

Iran-backed Houthi rebels commemorated the President's death


This turnout of mourners, in comparison, drew on widespread public anger at worsening living standards which likely kept many Iranians at home.

The death of President Raisi, who had been nicknamed the "Butcher of Tehran", has sparked a succession crisis in the country; his loss has upset the plans of hardliners who wanted him to succeed Ayatollah Khamenei - and will stir rivalries in their camp over who will take over the Islamic Republic when he dies.

Raisi had enjoyed staunch backing from Khamenei, who had himself held the position of president before he became Supreme Leader in 1989 - and the position allows its holder to wield ultimate power in Iran, acting as commander-in-chief of the armed forces and deciding on the direction of foreign policy.

Though Khamenei has not endorsed a successor, analysts have said Raisi was one of the two names most often mentioned - the second being Khamenei's second son, Mojtaba, who is widely believed to wield influence behind the scenes.

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