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Khamenei Appears at Religious Ceremony Despite Rumors of Ill Health

A photo released by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khameni's office on September 17, 2022, shows him attending a Arbaeen ceremony in Tehran. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader)
A photo released by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khameni’s office on September 17, 2022, shows him attending a Arbaeen ceremony in Tehran. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader)

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei appeared publicly Saturday at a religious ceremony, a day after a report said he may miss the event due to severe illness.

After the state broadcaster initially aired images from a 2019 Arbaeen event, Khamenei’s office released photos of the Iranian leader at the Shiite mourning ceremony on Saturday.

In most of the photos, Khamenei is seen sitting on a bench off to the side of the room as others addressed the assembled students, though several showed him standing.

Khamenei’s appearance at the event in Tehran came after the New York Times reported Friday that he was gravely ill after undergoing surgery last week for a bowel obstruction and had canceled all public meetings, being too weak to even sit up.

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