Mausoleum of Khomeini
|Mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini|
The tomb of Ayatollah Khomeini at Behesht-e Zahra
The Mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini houses the tomb of Ruhollah Khomeini, his wife Khadijeh Saqafi, and Ahmad Khomeini, his second son who died in 1995. It is located to the south of Tehran in the Behesht-e Zahra (the Paradise of Zahra) cemetery. Construction commenced in 1989 following Khomeini's death on June 3 of that year. It is still under construction, but when completed will be the centerpiece in a complex spread over 5,000 acres (20 km2), housing a cultural and tourist center, a university for Islamic studies, a seminary, a shopping mall, and a 20,000-car parking lot.  The Iranian government has reportedly devoted US$2 billion to this development.
The site is a place of pilgrimage for followers of Khomeini. It is used symbolically by government figures, and is on occasion visited by foreign dignitaries. Khomeini's grandson Hassan Khomeini is in charge of caring for the mausoleum.
On June 20, 2009, a suicide bomb attack reportedly occurred near the site of the Mausoleum, according to Iranian state-controlled media.
The architect of the tomb was Mohammed Tehrani. The exterior of the shrine complex is a highly recognizable landmark. It has a gold dome sitting on a high drum, surrounded by four free-standing minarets. The shrine is surrounded by a large rectangular plaza which has been designed to hold vast numbers of visitors. With its size, inclusion of a qibla wall and a maqsura, the tomb resembles a mosque, but has been called an Hussainia.
Inside, Khomeini's sarcophagus is centrally placed under the gilded dome. The dome sits above a transition zone with two layers of clerestories, decorated with stained glass depicting tulips (an Iranian symbol of martyrdom). The dome is supported by eight large marble columns that circle the sarcophagus, that together with other smaller columns support the space frame ceiling. The ceiling is also punctuated by clerestories. The floor and wall surfaces are made of polished white marble. The floor is covered with fine carpets.
Non-Muslims are allowed inside the complex.
Media related to Mausoleum of Ayatollah Khomeini at Wikimedia Commons
- Behesht-e Zahra
- Holiest sites in Islam (Shia)
- Imām Ridhā Mosque
- Fatimah al-Ma'sūmah Mosque
- Shāh Abdol Azīm Mosque
- Khomeini Tomb
- Khomeini's Tomb Attracts Pilgrims - New York Times
- FarsiNet News - News related to Iran, Iranians and Persians - June 1997
- Khomeini's grandson speaks out on Iran military | France 24
- Suicide bomber attacks Khomeini shrine in Iran
- Kaplan, Robert, Ends of the Earth, A journey at the Dawn of the 21st Century, Random House, 1996, p.179
- Mehr-e-Khavar Iran In Brief