• Short Summary

    Iranians celebrated the New Year on Wednesday (21 March), the first without a monarchy, and religious leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeiny delivered the customary greetings message in place of the exiled Shah. "No-Ruz" is Iran's traditional spring festival that goes back to the country's remotest Zoroastrian roots and there had been fears that the new leaders, bent on enforcing a strictly Islamic rule, might frown on what is one of the last remnants of the pre-Moslem Iranian past.

  • Description

    Iranians celebrated the New Year on Wednesday (21 March), the first without a monarchy, and religious leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeiny delivered the customary greetings message in place of the exiled Shah. "No-Ruz" is Iran's traditional spring festival that goes back to the country's remotest Zoroastrian roots and there had been fears that the new leaders, bent on enforcing a strictly Islamic rule, might frown on what is one of the last remnants of the pre-Moslem Iranian past. But an unusually relaxed Ayatollah Khomeiny, giving one of his rare smiles, appeared on television screens to wish Iranians a Happy New Year.

    SYNOPSIS: Prime Minister Mehdi Bazargan also delivered a message after the Ayatollah Khomeiny and then went on to a Teheran stadium to speak at a New Year's Day rally. The sports complex was not filled to capacity, but the crowd who did attend gave Mr. Bazargan an enthusiastic response.

    For many years there had been New Year's greetings from the Shah, followed by a message from the Empress Farah and one by the long-serving Prime Minister Amir Abbas Hoveyda. But the monarch and his wife are now in Morocco, while Mr. Hoveyda sits in Teheran's main jail awaiting trial.

    A crowd gathered outside the Ayatollah Khomeiny's house in the city of Qom where he made a brief rooftop appearance to speak to them. In his address to the nation earlier in the day the Ayatollah did not mention the current fighting in Kurdistan, which is into its third day on Wednesday (21 March). And people seemed to be in a festive mood to celebrate the beginning of the solar year.

    As the Ayatollah greeted his followers a group from the Paris-based International Women's Rights Committee were making their way to see him.

    The feminist delegation, part of a watch-dog body created last week by a group of women writers maintain that women's rights have been violated by Iran's Islamic revolution. American feminist Kate Millett was expelled from the country for participating in street demonstrations against the traditional Moslem Chador for women. The Ayatollah refused -- at least initially -- to see the delegation.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA7FOEO8NSW42FUSRQQXJ728HHU
    Media URN:
    VLVA7FOEO8NSW42FUSRQQXJ728HHU
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    21/03/1979
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:53:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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