Ahmadinejad opponents shout protests from rooftops

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June 15, 2009 01:08

 
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Protesters battled police over Iran's disputed election and shouted their opposition from the rooftops Sunday, but President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed the unrest as little more than "passions after a soccer match" and drew his own huge rally of support. Just after sundown, cries of "death to the dictator" echoed through Tehran as thousands of backers for Ahmadinejad's rival, Mir Hossein Mousavi, heeded a call to bellow from the roofs and balconies. The deeply symbolic act recalled the shouts of "Allahu Akbar," or God is Great, to show opposition to the Western-backed monarchy before the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The scenes summed up the showdown over the disputed elections: an outwardly confident Ahmadinejad exerted control, while Mousavi showed no sign of backing down and could be staking out a new role as powerful opposition voice.

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