Iran blocks ‘illegal’ rally at ancient king’s tomb
Iranian authorities prevented what they called an “illegal gathering” at the tomb of ancient Persian king Cyrus the Great and arrested a number of suspects, local media reported.
The Mizanonline news website said the intelligence ministry had identified members of “a counter-revolutionary group which had wanted to organise an illegal gathering under the pretext of celebrating Cyrus”.
Authorities cut the main highway between the cities of Shiraz and Esfahan, which leads to an archaeological site where the tomb is believed to be located. They said the closure was for road work.
Semi-official ISNA news agency reported that the head of the elite Revolutionary Guard, General Hashem Ghiassi, had issued a warning to the “counter-revolutionaries”.
Footage posted on social media showed participants chanting for freedom of expression, along with nationalistic and anti-Arab slogans.
Cyrus the Great was the founder of the Achaemenid Empire in the 6th Century BC and ruled over ancient Persia for about 30 years. – AFP