A bomb planted inside a tape recorder in an assassination attempt exploded during a mosque ceremony today wounding Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's chief defense aide, Tehran radio reported.
The radio said Hojatolislamput Sayed Ali Khamenei was rushed to the hospital where he underwent surgery. The official Pars news agency said he suffered injuries to his lungs. There was no word on his condition.
'At the beginning of this ceremony, a bomb that had been placed inside one of the tape-recorders (in front of Khamenei to record his speech) exploded and wounded Mr. Khamenei,' the radio said.
The assassination attempt was blamed on Forqan, a group of terrorist clergymen held responsible for the slayings of several Khomeini aides in the past.
The assassination attempt took place in south Tehran as Khamenei was speaking at a mosque ceremony after noon prayers, the radio said.
'Details of the assassination attempt will be broadcast later,' the radio said.
Khamenei is Khomeini's representative on the policy-making Supreme Defense Council. Khomeini's other man on the council, Mustafa Chamran, was killed on the Susangerd front of the Iran-Iraq war earlier this week.
Khamenei also is Tehran's chief religious leader, responsible for leading prayers. At Friday's prayers, he appeared sporting 'his Castro-type beard and holding a rifle in one hand, a microphone in the other,' a newspaper in neighboring Turkey, the left-leaning Cumhuriyet, reported today in a dispatch from its Tehran correspondent.
The attack on Khamenei came as the deposed president Abolhassan Bani-Sadr in a message sent to Iranians from his hideout said he will 'disclose documents and tapes' incriminating his fundamentalist foes, Turkish newspapers reported from the Iranian capital.
The leading Turkish national daily Hurriyet's correspondent Bulent Eranac reported from Tehran that thousands of copies of Bani-Sadr's printed message were distributed across Iran and 'caused a tumult among the people.'
The Gunaydin daily said tapes of Bani-Sadr's message recorded in his own voice were also available in Tehran.
Bani-Sadr disappeared June 10 and according to a Kurdish leader based in Oslo, Norway, is now living somewhere in West Iran's mountainous region controlled by anti-Khomeini Kurdish guerrillas.
The former president was fired by Khomeini Monday and 50 people were executed on political charges, including support for Bani-Sadr, following the dismissal.
Bani-Sadr said he will agree to stand trial as demanded by Prosecutor-General Ali Qoddousi if the Islamic regime would accept two conditions, the Hurriyet said.
'First, all land, sea and air frontiers must be closed and all means of travel outside the country must be suspended. The control of borders must be handed over to the armed forces and police (instead of the revolutionary guards now in charge).
'Second, I would like to speak for three hours on the radio, during which I will make my revelations. After these disclosures the rulers of the country will look for excuses to hide themselves,' Bani-Sadr's message said, according to Hurriyet.
'I and my colleagues are in possession of some state archives. I ask my leader Khomeini to accept my request,' the message said.
Bani-Sadr warned, according to Hurriyet, he would 'still disclose several documents and tapes' if his proposal was not accepted.'
'My dear nation, I tell you that whatever happens I will disclose these documents. I have worked hard for my nation. It was you who brought me to the presidency and only you can take it away from me.
'I am sure that you will not let me down. I promise to be with you soon.'