Topmost Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani (62) was assassinated in a drone strike at his convoy at Baghdad International Airport, on Friday. After funeral processions at Ahvaz, Tehran and Qom, his body was brought to his hometown Kerman, for burial.
During the funeral at his hometown, in which scores of Iranians participated, a stampede resulted in 35 people being killed and 48 injured on Tuesday morning, as reported by Associated Press.
Pirhossein Koulivand confirmed the stampede
Pirhossein Koulivand, the head of Iran's emergency medical services, earlier spoke by telephone to state TV and confirmed the stampede took place. "Unfortunately as a result of the stampede, some of our compatriots have been injured and some have been killed during the funeral processions," he said.
In the videos of the incident, that have been shared online, lifeless mourners can be seen lying on the ground, with others rubbing their chests or administering CPR. Some of those on the ground had their faces covered.
Largest funeral procession after former Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini
Crowd that showed up at Soleimani's funeral procession, at Ahvaz, Tehran, Qom and Kerman, are reported to be largest, since that of the 1989 funeral of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, in which more than 10.2 million Iranians participated.
In the funeral, Revolutionary Guards' commander, Maj Gen Hossein Salami, told the black-clad mourners, "The martyr Qassem Suleimani is more powerful, now that he is dead. The enemy killed him unjustly". He, then threatened to "set ablaze" American interests in the region, amid the chants of "Death to Israel!".
On Monday, at the funeral in the Iranian capital Tehran, in which about a million people participated, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini sobbed publicly.
Solemani will be buried later Tuesday between the graves of Enayatollah Talebizadeh and Mohammad Hossein Yousef Elahi, two former Guard comrades. Both of them participated in Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988), a war in which Soleimani also participated.