Basij Should Preserve National, Transfactional Interests

August 21, 1999 - 0:0
TEHRAN President Mohammad Khatami here Thursday called the Basij Force (volunteer) the fruit of the popular and young Islamic Revolution. Speaking at a gathering of Basij commanders, Khatami said Basij is a symbol of youth and freshness of the Iranian nation in defending Islam, the revolution, and the territorial integrity and independence of the country. Alluding to the history of the Islamic Revolution and the difficulties it faced during the early days of the revolution, President Khatami said the Iraqi imposed war (1980-88) helped Basij grow, adding that like the revolution, Basij too comes from people.

The president underlined the important role of women as the main supporters of the Basij movement. The need for Basij type of morale is always felt and the country needs such morale in scientific and construction areas, President Khatami noted. Basij's role is not confined only to defense and the force should keep its readiness for activities in different areas, he said underlining the need for Basijis to be vigilant against all threats.

He said Basij ensures the country's security. Referring to the recent disturbances in Tehran and some other cities sparked by student demonstrations, the president said the Basij Forces are always ready to defend the revolution. He said it is a source of honor for the country that the unrest was curbed without resorting to fire arms. The Basijis should safeguard their national and transfactional interests, President Khatami noted.

Cooperation between Basij and government has been always good specially in employment and labor sections, he said adding that such cooperation would be helpful in other sections too. (IRNA)