Gholamreza Azhari, 83; Briefly Served as Iran's Prime Minister

Gholamreza Azhari, 83, former Iranian army general who served briefly in 1978 as Iran's prime minister, died Nov. 5 of cancer in Fairfax, Va.

Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi appointed Azhari, then a top military official trying to quell widespread student protests, prime minister in November 1978. Azhari sent tanks into Tehran, banned public religious processions, closed newspapers and sent troops to stop oil field strikes.

Azhari, a career military man, stepped down as rioting spread across Iran and his health failed. After suffering a heart attack, he came to the United States in January 1979 for heart surgery at Bethesda Naval Hospital.

While the general was recovering, the shah fled Iran and his government fell. Azhari remained in the U.S., living in anonymity in McLean, Va.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World