Iran begins funeral for slain military nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh

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Iran has begun a funeral for a recently killed scientist who founded the Islamic Republic’s military nuclear program in the early 2000s.

State TV broadcast the ceremony Monday showing the casket of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. An honor guard carried it to a podium where reciters read the Quran and other religious verses in an outdoor area of the Defense Ministry in Iran's capital, Tehran.

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Officials, including Defense Minister Gen. Amir Hatami, attended the ceremony, sitting apart from each other and wearing masks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The funeral got underway with a religious singer praising Fakhrizadeh and alluding to the martyrdom Imam Hossein, revered 7th century holy figure from whom Shiite Muslims draw inspiration.

A large display showed a picture of Fakhrizadeh next to Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, as well as former top general Qasem Soleimani, who was killed in a January air strike by the US in Baghdad.

The funeral was not open to the public in order to maintain health protocols over the novel coronavirus pandemic, according to the defense ministry.

Fakhrizadeh was killed in a military-style ambush Friday on the outskirts of Tehran, which reportedly saw a truck bomb explode and gunmen open fire on the scientist.

Iran has blamed Israel for the attack. Israel, long suspected of killing Iranian nuclear scientists over the last decade, has declined to comment on the killing.

Read more:

Iranian press: Fakhrizadeh assassinated using automatic machine gun operated remotely

Iranian newspaper: Iran should attack Haifa if Israel killed scientist Fakhrizadeh

Who was Mohsin Fakhrizadeh, the assassinated ‘father of Iran’s nuclear bomb’

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