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IRAN: Neda's friends, family describe woman who became an icon


She was “a beam of light,” a music and travel lover -- but never an activist.

Friends and family of Neda Agha-Soltan spoke to The Times’ Borzou Daragahi about the 26-year-old Iranian woman seen bleeding on the streets of Tehran in shaky video footage that has turned her into an international symbol of the protest movement:

The first word came from abroad. An aunt in the United States called her Saturday in a panic. "Don't go out into the streets, Golshad," she told her. "They're killing people."

The relative proceeded to describe a video, airing on exile television channels that are jammed in Iran, in which a young woman is shown bleeding to death as her companion calls out, "Neda! Neda!"

A dark premonition swept over Golshad, who asked that her real name not be published. She began calling the cellphone and home number of her friend Neda Agha-Soltan, who had gone to the chaotic demonstration with a group of friends, but Neda didn't answer.

At midnight, as the city continued to smolder, Golshad drove to the Agha-Soltan residence in the eastern Tehran Pars section of the capital.

As she heard the cries and wails and praising of God reverberating from the house, she crumpled, knowing that her worst fears were true.

"Neda! Neda!" the 25-year-old cried out. "What will I do?"

Read Daragahi's report Family, friends mourn Iranian woman who died on video.

-- Alexandra Zavis in Los Angeles

Photo: An undated picture posted online June 22, 2009, shows Neda Agha-Soltan, who was reportedly shot and killed during a protest in Tehran. Credit: AFP / Getty Images

Comments () | Archives (8)

When will these wars end? My heart breaks for this strong, beautiful young woman. God be with her family and friends.

America supports your cause and we wil not forget this young lady nor any of those that have suffered in this region. I hope all sides stop the killing..

Oh Neda what brother took that shot
That pierced your heart?
Does he not have a daughter, a sister
Or mother?
Who does he follow that allows
The killings of brothers and sisters?
Where are the leaders of the people?
Do they not hear the peoples cry?
They must listen to the people.
Youth stand up and let them hear your voice!
The voice does Allah’s, Jesus’s and the Buddha’s work!
Stand up to the arrogance
And evil that lies in the human heart.
The fundamental darkness must
Be challenged.
Apathy is what evil wants.
Freedom and justice is your cause.
Make them run and cower in the shadows.
The truth is your sword. The truth is your friend.

صحنه قتل ندا بسیار فجیع بود یکسره اشگ ریختم روح وروانم آزرده و آشفته شد.باید کاری کرد. قطعا این جنایت وسایر جنایات اوباش رژیم بی چواب نخواهد ماند. ونقطعه عطف اعتراضات مردم همین جنایات خواد بود.

For this reason did We prescribe to the children of Israel that whoever slays a soul, unless it be for manslaughter or for mischief in the land, it is as though he slew all men; and whoever keeps it alive, it is as though he kept alive all men. Qur'an 5:32

Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji`un: Verily we are from God, and verily to Him we shall return. Qur'an 2:156

Keep your eyes on the prize. We shall overcome.

For engaged couple Kaspeen Makan and Neda Sultani, our prayers and tears


I still remember how you closed your eyes and smiled
And said you wished you could see the thread that bound us

You said if it's intangible, it can't break
Your warmth remains in my arms

I want to become the wind for you and wrap you all up
Across the vastness of time, for all eternity, from this moment on

"I'll never let you go again"
I pledged as we made love
I could hear the rain that night

I want to become the wind for you and wrap you all up
Your voice will echo in my heart for all eternity
Until the end of time

On nights when I long to see you, but can't, I'll unfurl my love in the sky
And it will fly to your side
If you feel the same

I want to become the wind for you and wrap you all up
Far, far away, for all eternity it will reach you

I want to become the wind for you and wrap you all up
That is my answer, always and forever

By your side (Now I'm just by your side)
I want to become the wind (Just for you)
And wrap you up (If I could hold)
(Our love forever)
Far away (I'd never let go)
Just you (You for all eternity)
For all eternity (My beloved)

Now I'm just by your side
Just for you
If I could hold
Our love forever I'd never let go
You for all eternity
My beloved

My beloved...


Neda Agha-Soltan

The Guardian Council - determined votes collected in many cities surpassed the number of people eligible to vote.....this alone should be enough to reverse the reelection of corrupt Ahmadinejad.

Khamenei supports Ahmadinejad, his "Branch manager of Terror" for the millions of good people stuck with these pathetic excuses of a so called government!

So Iranians had lost faith in their own legal thing is for certain, these people are waking up from a thirty year nightmare!

Ahmadinejad reportedly said - "you will not be placed in the circle of friendship with the Iranian nation"....then these sick individuals seem to believe the West is using tactics against maybe letting the rest of the world fully understand that senior religious fanatics of the Iranian government have allowed at least 100 innocent men, women and children to be murdered for protesting simple greed and corruption!

Listen to these names, the Expediency Council, the Assembly of Experts, the supreme leader.....these people are unbalanced - blaming the west for their own problems: Remember last summer, when gasoline was very expensive - one word from Ahmadinejad on his nukes would send the price of gas sky-rocketing.....this pathetic excuse for a human being was most likely laughing, while being backslapped by his supreme leader for doing such a great job!

The honest Iranian people should rise up and free all the political prisoners from Tehran's Evin Prison, then lock up the Expediency Council, the Assembly of Experts and lets not forget the supreme leader with his "Branch Manager" Ahmadinejad.

Allow them an honest chance to prove themselves, then hang the rest!

The world would be a better place if disturbed dictators like these sick INDIVIDUALS did not waste the precious Iranian fresh air and clean water!

Michael Ishoj

My heart and prayers are with her family. They can take pride in that she is a hero, not just for Iranians but also here in America. She risked her life for freedom.

May her family be comforted by their faith.


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