Iran's unofficial head of state, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, today offered the country's restive Kurdish minority the equivalent of $75 million in an apparent bid to buy its loyalty and head off a rebellion in western Iran.
At the same time, Khomeini warned Kurdish rebel leaders that they would be punished harshly if they did not accept his Islamic rule.
In an eight-point statement broadcast by the state radio, the Moslem religious leader said he had ordered the chairman of the National Iranian Oil Co. to put a day's oil revenue at the disposal of the western province of Kurdistan within the next week. At normal export levels, this would amount to about $75 million.
The first four points of the statement covered discipline in the armed forces, of which Khomeini declared himself the supreme commander last week.
Hinting at discontent in the armed forces over his orders to put down the Kurdish rebellion, he said special courts would judge soldiers who failed to obey orders or who took part in strikes.
The fighting against the Kurds has been carried out principally by Islamic Revolutionary Guards dispatched from outside the Kurdish region.
In his statement, Khomeini said, "I tell the Kurds that all the Iranian masses are the same. There is no difference between the nationalities."
But he warned members of the banned Kurdistan Democratic Party that they must "join Islam" or face harsh treatment from the authorities. The Kurds are Sunni Moslems; Khomeini is the leader of the Shiite wing of Islam in Iran. n the Kurdish stronghold of Mahabad, supporters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party today deployed tanks and antiaircraft batteries in preparation for a possible attack by government forces.
Earlier today Iran's state radio reported that Revoluntionary Guards had killed 60 Kurdish rebels in mopping up operations in Kurdistan. The radio said 10 guards were killed in the clashes, several were injured and 10 were missing.
A Tehran evening newspaper said 75 rebels were killed.
Those reports could not be confirmed independently. Kurdish sources indicated that the government-controlled news media was trying to dramatize the conflict to rally support from an increasingly disenchanted public.
Meanwhile the leaders of the Kurdish rebellion threatened to execute a captured Revolutionary Guard for each rebel Kurd shot by firing squad.
In other developments in Iran:
A married woman convicted of adultery was executed in the northern town of Behshar, while her lover was flogged. The revolutionary court said it gave the lesser sentence to the man because he was single.
Two West German journalists, among five European reporters whose expulsions were ordered yesterday by the Ministry of National Guidance, will be permitted to stay in Iran, the official Pars News Agency said. A ministry spokesman said the two were accredited by the government and that "the expulsion order against them was due to a misunderstanding."