Teheran Radio said on Tuesday (11 November) that Iran forces were retreating from positions around the Iranian oil city of Abadan.
TV Coffins being carried by crowd through the streets of Teheran (2 shots)
TV Mourners chanting and waving arms
CU Portrait of one of the dead
GV Flag-draped coffin being borne on shoulders of crowd and being placed into back of vans (2 shots)
GV INTERIOR iranian Majlis with speaker addressing members
CU Members seated listening
CU PULL BACK TO GV Speaker continues address
SV ZOOM INTO CU Hashemi Refsanjani, Majlis Speaker, addressing news conference in Farsi
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Teheran Radio said on Tuesday (11 November) that Iran forces were retreating from positions around the Iranian oil city of Abadan. The official broadcast claimed the Iraqis were leaving behind large numbers of dead and wounded. It said more than 120 Iraqis had been killed on the southern front of the war on Tuesday along (11 November).
SYNOPSIS: The Iranians have been less forthcoming about their own casualty figures in the war. But 22 Iranians soldiers, who had been killed on the southern front, were given a mass funeral in Teheran on Monday (10 November).
Thousands of chanting and weeping mourners packed the city streets in a massive show of nationalism.
These dead were described as martyrs for Iran. Many had been killed during the Iranians' staunch defence of Abadan. The base for the giant oil installations has been under heavy bombardment from Iraqi forces since shortly after the war started in September.
And as grief for those killed in the war spills into the streets of the capital, the Iranian government has agreed to a visit by a United Nations emissary to discuss the fighting. Teheran Radio said the issue was discussed at a meeting of the country's Supreme Defence Council. Previous mediation efforts have failed, with Iran insisting it won't negotiate while Iraqis are on Iranian soil.
While the monitoring of Teheran Radio remains one of the chief news sources for the West, Iranian Television has become a centre of controversy. There have been angry exchanges in the Majlis (Parliament) between opponents and supporters of former Prime Minister, Sadeq Qotzbadeh. He was arrested on the orders of Teheran's Public Prosecutor after criticising the running of the state broadcasting service. He had said, in a television interview, that unauthorised people were trying to impose their views on television. So far, Mr. Qotzbadeh has not been formally charged with any offence.
Meanwhile the Speaker for the Majlis, Hashemi Rafsanjani, told the house that Ayatollah Khomeini had personally authorised the sacking of a man who had tried to dismiss Islamic fundamentalists from the broadcasting service. One the subject of the American hostages, Mr. Rafsanjani told a news conference on Monday (10 November) the release terms will not be changed by Iran. He said if the terms are not met, the hostages will remain in Iran and be tried by the courts.