Iranians are pouring out onto the streets of Tehran and other cities and towns across the country, marking the date 40 years ago that’s considered victory day in the country’s 1979 Islamic Revolution. On Feb. 11 that year, Iran’s military stood down after days of street battles, allowing the revolutionaries to sweep across the country while the government of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi resigned. Crowds were marching on 11 February 2019, heading out from a dozen points in the Iranian capital toward Tehran Azadi, or Freedom Square.
- Tehran’s downtown Enghelab, or Revolution Street, is decorated with huge balloons. Loudspeakers are blaring out revolutionary and nationalist songs to encourage people to join the rallies.
- This year’s anniversary come as tensions are rising with the U.S. and Iran is grappling with re-imposed U.S. sanctions.
- The Iranian Revolution was a series of events involving the overthrow of the monarch of Iran, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi and replacing his government with an Islamic republic under the Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, a leader of one of the factions in the revolt.
- The movement against the United States-backed monarchy was supported by various leftist and Islamist organizations and student movements.