The Iranian government warned today that anyone unlawfully occupying government buildings or private homes could be executed.
At the same time, Finance Minister Abol Hassan Bani-Sadr was quoted by the Tehran Times newspaper as saying that "nowhere in the world" are differences of opinion resolved by occupying government buildings.
But the finance minister and former acting foreign minister was not referring to the occupation, with government backing, of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran.
Bani-Sadr made his comment in the northwestern city of Tabriz where he has been trying to persuade Azerbaijani dissidents to end their takeover of government buildings, according to Iran's official news media.
In Tehran, meanwhile, about 150 youthful followers of a local mullah, Mohammed Montazeri, added insult to injury by invading the Foreign Ministry to press demands for government help in traveling to Lebanon to fight alongside Palestinian guerrillas against Israel.
The Lebanese and Iranian governments and the Palestine Liberation Organization have discouraged the initiative.
After waiting for more than 48 hours at Tehran's airport, Montazeri's commandos, the first of a purported vanguard of 1,700 like-minded youths, descended on the ministry. They blocked corridors before a small delegation was received by the minister.