An man injured during the Iranian fire festival on March 15, 2022

An man injured during the Iranian fire festival on March 15, 2022

Iran’s Fire Festival Claims 19 Deaths and 2,800 Injuries

3/16/2022

At least 19 people died and 2,800 injured in Iran Tuesday evening in Chaharshanbe Suri, the celebration of the annual fire festival ahead of Iranian New Year.

More than 30 of the injured are in critical condition, 171 had lost a limb, 880 suffered eye injuries, and 850 are suffering from different degrees of burns, the spokesman of the national emergency services, Mojtaba Khaledi, said Wednesday.

Home-made fireworks and improvised explosives, authorities have said, are the main cause of casualties, although most people only leap over bonfires and fireworks. State broadcasters carry safety warnings.

Hossein Rahimi, the Tehran chief police said Tuesday, even before most celebrations had begun, that more than 50 people had been arrested in the capital.

Police usually arrest people who celebrate the Chaharshanbe Suri with dance and drinks as the national tradition is frowned upon by Islamic hardliners who see it as a pagan relic.

Literally translated as festive or scarlet Wednesday, Chaharshanbe Suri, whose roots go back beyond ancient Zoroastrianism, is a prelude to Nowruz holidays and is marked on the eve of the last Wednesday of the final Iranian month.

Nowruz is celebrated across Asia with similar traditions at the time of the spring equinox, when the day becomes longer than the night. With ‘Chunfen,’ millions of Chinese head for outdoor picnics.

Oral History
IITV News (12) - DC
Chand Chand

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