Iran's roving Islamic Judge, Ayatollah Sadeq Khalkhali, has been conducting a fierce campaign to purge the country of narcotics and those trafficking in drugs.
GV Shohada Hospital in Tajrish
SV & CU Ayatollah Khalkhali speaking on telephone (2 shots)
GV Crowds shouting as they wait in bus depot (7 shots)
CU Captured drugs and weighing scales (2 shots)
GV PAN Captured drugs in various packages
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Iran's roving Islamic Judge, Ayatollah Sadeq Khalkhali, has been conducting a fierce campaign to purge the country of narcotics and those trafficking in drugs. Since May, the Revolutionary judge had ordered the deaths of more than one hundred and seventy-five alleged narcotics dealers after summary trials. On Tuesday (8 July) he publicly executed seven men by firing squad in a central Teheran street. It was the first public execution in the city for years. The same day, the Ayatollah, released from hospital after escaping serious injury in a car accident, conducted a tour of captured drugs and other contraband.
SYNOPSIS: Ayatollah Khalkhali's road accident on Sunday (6 July) when the brakes on the car he was driving failed, could have been fatal.
He said that when he realised they had failed, he headed for a tree. Instead, the car which was travelling fast dropped into a water channel and hit a wall. He scoffed at rumours that he was the target of an assassination attempt, and said that his work would continue while he was in hospital.
But the crowds waiting impatiently for buses did not seem too happy about the campaign. The Ayatollah this week closed down four but companies suspected of transporting narcotics, leaving many vacationers without transport.
The Revolutionary judge was appointed head of the anti-narcotics campaign by President Abolhassan Bani-Sadr.
The campaign has to dat netted a haul of more than twenty tonnes of opium, 500kilos (1100 pounds) of heroin and 10 tonnes of other drugs.
Other contraband included Persian carpets, piles of American-brand cigarettes and thousands of clay opium pipes. The drugs, destined for export or trafficking among Iran's officially-estimated eight hundred thousand addicts will be disposed of in different ways.
The heroin will be burnt, and the opium will be turned over to the Health Ministry for the treatment of addicts. Ayatollah Khalkhali said if the government needs the hashish, it will be turned over to them. He described the campaign against drug smugglers as being two hundred percent successful.