Mandela Arrives In Tehran, Lays Wreath At Khomeini Shrine
NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) _ Nelson Mandela placed a wreath at Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s shrine on Tuesday in acknowledgment of Iran’s steadfast stand against apartheid, Tehran radio reported.
Iran, which often refers to itself as the defender of the world’s oppressed people, has been among the most outspoken Middle Eastern countries in condemning apartheid. It has vowed not to establish ties with South Africa until apartheid has been completely dismantled.
″We are here to thank the Iranian government and nation for their support in the black people’s struggle against apartheid,″ the radio quoted Mandela as saying after arriving in Tehran Tuesday. The report was monitored in Nicosia.
The Islamic Republic News Agency, also monitored in Cyprus, said that during his visit Mandela will confer with President Hashemi Rafsanjani, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati and Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Ali Larijani.