This morning, some 5,000 people, wearing shrouds, went to Isfahan from the cities of Najafabad and Dowlatabad to stage a demonstration. Upon arrival, however, they were attacked by the Guards and many were injured or arrested.
To thwart any antigovernment protest from taking shape, this morning, large groups of Guards Corps members were stationed throughout Isfahan. Plain-clothed Guards organized in groups of 100 marched in the city, chanting slogans in favor of Khamenei and against Mr. Montazeri.
Despite heavy military atmosphere at the Friday prayers, a number of those in attendance chanted antigovernment slogans, but were beaten up and arrested by the Guards.
In Najafabad, Montazeri's hometown, the mullahs' regime has put the Guards Corps' 31st "Ashura" division, stationed in the city, on full alert. In addition, the Khomeini regime dispatched a large number of Guards to Najafabad from neighboring cities to prevent protest demonstrations and to stop local residents from going to Isfahan.
"In Isfahan province, the remnants of the Mojahedin and supporters of Mehdi Hashemi have beguiled Montazeri and turned to activities that please Israel," Khamenei said yesterday. He added: "They harass the people and fan the flames of propaganda for their American and Zionist friends."
Khamenei had warned: "I will not allow them to disrupt the Iranian nation's security and peace in pursuit of their treacherous and petty objectives."
Several days ago, the regime's Supreme National Security Council held a special session, assigning the Ministry of Intelligence and the Guards Corps to the task of quelling the unrest in Isfahan province and to exert more control over the supporters of Mr. Montazeri who has openly expressed opposition to Khamenei.
Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
May 25, 1998