Neda Agah-Soltan, 26 years old, killed by a bullet in the front of her neck while standing on a street in Tehran. Neda Agah-Soltan was unknown by the public prior to her death, according to an article in the Los Angeles Times she was:
Born in Tehran, they said, to a father who worked for the government and a homemaker mother.
They were a family of modest means, part of the country’s emerging middle class who built their lives in rapidly developing neighborhoods on the eastern and western outskirts of the city.
Like many in her neighborhood, Agha-Soltan was loyal to the country’s Islamic roots and traditional values, friends say, but also curious about the outside world, which was easily accessed through satellite TV, the Internet and occasional trips abroad.
The second of three children, she studied Islamic philosophy at a branch of Tehran’s Azad University until deciding to pursue a career in tourism. She took private classes to become a tour guide, including Turkish-language courses, friends said, hoping to someday lead groups of Iranians on trips abroad.
Travel was her passion, and with her friends she saved up enough money for package tours to Dubai, Turkey and Thailand. Two months ago, on a trip to Turkey, she relaxed along the beaches of Antalya, on the Mediterranean coast.
She also loved music, especially Persian pop, and was taking piano lessons, according to Panahi and other friends. She was also an accomplished singer, they said.
But she was never an activist, they added, and she began attending the mass protests only because she was outraged by the election results.
The Iranian government has done everything it can to obscure any memory of Neda Agah-Soltan’s death, reportedly at the hands of a government backed paramilitary, according to a BBC report. The Ayatollahs in power, who in all likelihood engineered a crooked election to retain their puppet president do not want Neda Agah-Soltan to become a martyr of the people. The Ayatollahs are in fear, in fear that despite their continuing repression of their people, they may one day lose the power to squelch and control the people, that one day, the ordinary people of Iran may achieve their own self determination.
Neda Agah-Soltan is a universal symbol of that desire by all ordinary people, throughout the world for self determination, for a chance to live a productive, joyous life, in freedom and without fear. Her’s is a life and death that should not be forgotten. A reminder, that no matter our own status in life, there are always going to be others we should not forget or neglect.