Leader Hails Massive Funeral for Martyrs

Leader Hails Massive Funeral for MartyrsLeader Hails Massive Funeral for Martyrs

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei issued a message late on Tuesday to thank the people who marched in a large funeral procession in Tehran to commemorate 270 martyred soldiers, including 175 military divers.

The divers, whose remains, along with those of the rest of the dead soldiers, were recently recovered, had been captured and killed almost three decades ago in 1986 during Operation Karbala 4 in the 1980-1988 Iraqi-imposed war while trying to cross the Arvand Rud River along the border with Iraq.   

The public procession followed a more intimate ceremony on Monday evening where mourners read passages from the Holy Quran and laid flowers on the divers' flag-draped coffins, Fars News Agency reported.

Pictures in the media last month showed the bodies, still dressed in diving gear and their hands tied with wire, being dug up from the Iraqi side of the river border, scene of some of the heaviest fighting, and returned to Iran.

"Your meaningful participation today in the funeral procession of these distinguished (soldiers), who have returned home, is one of the most memorable events in the (history of the Islamic) revolution," the Leader said in the message.