Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad blows kisses to supporters as he attends a Jerusalem Day (al-Quds Day) rally on August 2, 2013 in Tehran, Iran. Most Islamic states mark the annual event, which happens on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan. UPI/Maryam Rahmanian | License Photo
TEHRAN, Aug. 2 (UPI) -- Outgoing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said he was thankful to be part of a national day against tyranny first started by the leader of the revolution.
Iranian dignitaries took to the streets Friday to mark Quds Day, a day to express solidarity with the cause of the Palestinians. The day was inaugurated during the 1979 revolution by late Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as an act of defiance against Israel.
Ahmadinejad said he was honored to take part in the Friday celebrations, his last as president.
"Thanks God I managed to be present among the public in the 34th International Quds Day rallies, assigned by the late Imam Khomeini," he was quoted by the semiofficial Fars News Agency as saying.
Members of the Iranian parliament issued a statement this week calling on demonstrators to work to thwart U.S. and Israeli plots in the region.
President-elect Hassan Rouhani said the event is a show of Muslim unity against tyranny and spiritual support for the Palestinians.
Ahmadinejad took part in his last Cabinet session this week. Rouhani, who is scheduled to be sworn in Sunday, has vowed to lead as a moderate and said he'd reach out to members of the international community when he takes office.