Morocco World News
Morocco World News
New York, March 13, 2013
Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is under fire following his attendance of the funeral of the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez in Caracas.
Senior Iranian clerics heavily criticized the Iranian president for hugging Chavez’s mother Elena Frias when consoling the mother of the late Venezuelan president last Friday.
The gesture was deemed sinful and un-Islamic under the country’s Islamic traditions.
Conservative clerics said that embracing the elderly mother is “Harram,” forbidden in Islamic tradition, and constitutes a violation of the strict codes of the Islamic Republic of Iran.Hugging a woman is “improper for the dignity of the president of a country like the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
Mr. Ahmadinejad already had stirred controversy after he declared a national day of mourning following the announcement of Hugo Chavez’ death.
In his laudatory speech, the Iranian president said that the late Chavez “will come again along with Jesus Christ and Al-Imam al-Mahdi to redeem mankind.”
“Chavez’s soul will return and that he will come again after the appearance of the (Hidden) Imam,” the Iranian President said.
This speech caused outrage among Shiite conservative cleric who leveled harsh criticism against the president.
To calm the situation and deflect criticism from Ahmadinejad’s embrace of Chavez’s mother, the President’s supporters resorted to a technique that has been often used in the conservative country, namely faking pictures.
According to BBC, Ahmadi Najad’s supporters published a photo-shoped version of the picture where the Iranian President appears in the same position hugging a man, whom they claim is Chavez’ uncle.
But the person who was selected to appear in the picture and portrayed as Chavez’ uncle is Egyptian Mohammed El Baradai, opposition leader in Egypt and former director-general of the UN nuclear watchdog.