The grave of a young major in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard in Tehran proved true the reports about the role of Iranian forces in suppressing anti-regime protests.
Several Iranian websites posted the photo of the grave of Muharram Turk, a major in the Revolutionary Guard, in the Behesht-e Zahra cemetery, the biggest in the capital Tehran. According to the tombstone, Turk was born on March 30, 1978 and was “martyred” on Jan. 19, 2012 in the Syrian capital Damascus.
The grave also had a picture of Turk and some Persian verses glorifying martyrdom and mentioning that “another door of martyrdom was opened for us,” obviously in reference to the conflict in Syria.
The picture of the grave was first published in a blog and was later shared by several independent and opposition websites.
The blogger said he was walking by coincidence by the cemetery and the grave attracted his attention, because Damascus has become a place of death, so he took a picture of it and posted it on his blog.
Information about Turk, the circumstances of his death, or the reasons for his presence in Syria was, however, hardly available on Iran’s most known official or semi-official websites.
Turk’s name was mentioned on the Tehran Municipality website, on which pictures of Turk’s funeral were posted. His funeral was attended by a large number of mourners especially from the military.
Pictures of Iran’s Supreme Guide Ayatollah Ali Khamenei were held by the attendants of the funeral, indicating that it was organized by the authorities and that Turk died while he was on duty.
Another website called Heyat Fatemiun, which pays special attention to deceased soldiers, published very brief information about Turk.
According to the website, the major was “martyred” after he was hit by a grenade during military exercises carried out by the Revolutionary Guard.
The picture was published shortly after Revolutionary Guard commander Major General Mohammed Ali Jaafari vehemently denied the intervention of the Iranian military in Syria and stressed that cooperation with the Syrian regime does not exceed the “consultative” level.
Despite praising the revolutions that took place in several countries in the region like Egypt and Tunisia and calling it an “Islamic awakening,” Iranian state media refers to the Syrian revolution as a “fake version” of the Arab Spring that is supported by Western and Israeli agendas.