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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Neda's family forced out.

Via my colleague Stuart Whatley, the Guardian reports:
The Iranian authorities have ordered the family of Neda Agha Soltan out of their Tehran home after shocking images of her death were circulated around the world.
Neighbours said that her family no longer lives in the four-floor apartment building on Meshkini Street, in eastern Tehran, having been forced to move since she was killed. The police did not hand the body back to her family, her funeral was cancelled, she was buried without letting her family know and the government banned mourning ceremonies at mosques, the neighbours said. "We just know that they [the family] were forced to leave their flat," a neighbour said. The Guardian was unable to contact the family directly to confirm if they had been forced to leave.
How Neda Soltani became the face of Iran's struggle
Shortly after 5pm on Saturday afternoon, Hamed, an Iranian asylum seeker in the Netherlands, took a frantic call from a friend in Tehran.
"A girl has just been killed right next to me," the friend said. It had all ­happened quickly. A young woman, chatting on her mobile phone, had been shot in the chest. She faded before a doctor, who was on the scene, could do anything to help.
There was more. Hamed's friend, who does not want to be named, filmed the incident on his phone. Within moments the footage had lan
ded in Hamed's inbox. Five minutes later it was on YouTube and Facebook.
Within hours it had become one of the most potent threats faced by the ­Iranian regime in 30 years. LinkHere

Iran bans election protest footballers
Ali Karimi, Mehdi Mahdavikia and two others are 'retired' after sporting green wristbands in World Cup qualifier in Seoul
Their gesture attracted worldwide comment and drew the attention of football fans to Iran's political turmoil. Now the country's authorities have taken revenge by imposing life bans on players who sported green wristbands in a recent World Cup match in protest against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's disputed re-election.
According to the pro-government newspaper Iran, four players – Ali Karimi, 31, Mehdi Mahdavikia, 32, Hosein Ka'abi, 24 and Vahid Hashemian, 32 – have been "retired" from the sport after their gesture in last Wednesday's match against South Korea in Seoul.
They were among six players who took to the field wearing wristbands in the colour of the defeated opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, which has been adopted by demonstrators who believe the 12 June election was stolen.
Most of the players obeyed instructions to remove the armwear at half-time, but Mahdavikia wore his green captain's armband for the entire match. The four are also said to have been banned from giving media interviews. LinkHere


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