INTRODUCTION: The Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini has issued an unexpected call for purges of the Islamic judiciary and the Revolutionary Guards, two of the nation's most cherished institutions.
SV Crowds marching along road in rain and singing.
TGV Large crowd with umbrellas in Freedom Square chanting.
GV Crowds holding portraits of Ayatollah Khomeini waving fists and chanting.
SV Large portrait of Ayatollah on umbrella. (2 SHOTS)
CU Group of children singing national song.
GV Crowd responding with chanting.
Cu Woman carrying child PAN TO large crowd listening to speeches. (2 SHOTS)
GV Old man chanting.
SV ZOOM OUT FROM Portrait TO crowds listening to speeches.
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini has issued an unexpected call for purges of the Islamic judiciary and the Revolutionary Guards, two of the nation's most cherished institutions. In an address marking the Islamic republic's second anniversary on Wednesday (1 April) he accused members of both groups of playing a part in disunity in Iran. The message was read over the state radio after rain washed out a rally in Teheran's Azadi (Freedom Square) where his son, Ahmad, was due to read it to the crowds.
SYNOPSIS: Half a million people were expected at the rally but the heavy downpour reduced this number to about 10,000. Their enthusiasm wasn't dampened by the rain however as they chanted in the waterlogged square. Much of the ground was covered in water and many people were ferried over the flood in vans or hastily erected plank bridges.
The Ayatollah's statement that day criticised rumour-mongers, opponents of the government and supporters of the super-powers. The Imam also called on judicial authorities to set up delegations to study the country's courts and dismiss unsuitable judges and prosecutors.
At the last mass rally in Teheran, 45 people were injured in political violence at a meeting addressed by President Abolhassan Bani-Sadr. There were fears of more violence here but the crowd chanted only pro-Khomeini slogans.
In another part of his message, the Ayatollah called for prosecution of revolutionary guards who had strayed away from the religion and moderation. He included those who interfered in matters which were up to the courts or other institutions. These practices, he said, were against the Law of Islam.
The Revolutionary Guards, who are 50,000-strong, are deployed all over Iran. The Ayatollah Khomeini said their commanders should purge them if they had committed crimes.