|Army of the Guardians of
the Islamic Revolution
|Supreme Leader of Iran|
|Intelligence Protection Organization|
|Imam Hossein University|
The Basij (Persian: بسيج (lit. "The Mobilization"), Niruyeh Moghavemat Basij ("Mobilisation Resistance Force"), full name Sāzmān-e Basij-e Mostaz'afin (Persian: سازمان بسیج مستضعفین, "The Organization for Mobilization of the Oppressed") is a paramilitary volunteer militia established in 1979 by order of the Islamic Revolution's leader Ayatollah Khomeini. The original organization comprised the civilian volunteers whom the Ayatollah Khomeini urged to fight in the Iran–Iraq war. The force consists of young Iranians who have volunteered, often in exchange for official benefits. Currently Basij serve as an auxiliary force engaged in activities such as internal security as well as law enforcement auxiliary, the providing of social service, organizing of public religious ceremonies, and policing of morals and the suppression of dissident gatherings. The force is named Basij; an individual member is called basiji.
The Basij are set up as subordinate to, receiving their orders from, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and the current Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei to whom they are known for their loyalty. They have also been described as "a loosely allied group of organizations" including "many groups controlled by local clerics." They have a local organization in almost every city in Iran.
As of October 2009[update] Mohammad Reza Naqdi was the commander of the Basij. The force was often present and reacting against the widespread protests which occurred immediately after the 2009 Iranian presidential election and in the months following.
- 1 History
- 2 Organization and membership
- 3 Human rights and political activism
- 4 See also
- 5 Notes
- 6 Further reading
- 7 External links
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