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National Day against Chemical and Biological Weapons Observed in Tehran Peace Museum

8tir-newsTo commemorate the National Day against Chemical and Biological Weapons which coincides with the anniversary of chemical attack on the Iranian city of Sardasht, an event was held at Tehran Peace Museum which comprised of a friendly meeting and discussion session with veterans and families of chemical victims. Many participants including the veterans and victims of chemical weapons, Peace Museum's narrators, families of the Iraq-Iran war victims, members and activists affiliated with NGOs, public figures and others joined us in observing the day.

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Shahab Hosseini Visits Tehran Peace Museum

Shahab-hoseiniCannes’ Best Actor Award winner, Shahab Hosseini, a figure adored by the public visited Tehran’s Musuem of Peace this week. During his 2-hour visit, Hosseini keenly listened to the museum’s tour guides in an attempt to enrich his knowledge about peaceful means and the museum’s objectives. A major part of the tour was as always dedicated to understanding the criminality and fatality of chemical weapons and the way they affected the Iranian population and veterans of war.

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Online painting gallery for the youth, entitled "Peace Means...", commemorating the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima

peace-means-timTehran Peace Museum in collaboration with Visual Arts Press holds the “Peace Means” online exhibition. This exhibition aims to enrich teenagers’ knowledge and celebrates valuable notions such as respecting human rights, non-violenceو rejecting discrimination, embracing individualism, diversity, mutual understanding and tolerance.

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"Weapons of Mass Destruction; World's Common Distress" at Tehran Peace Museum

Psr-IR-tiOn Tuesday 25 May 2016, Tehran Peace Museum organized an event named "Weapons of mass destruction; world's common distress" in collaboration with Iranian affiliate of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) (PSR-Iran).  The participants including youths and medical students discussed the issue of weapons of mass destruction and a world free of their harms.

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Tehran Peace Museum, Best Private Museum in “Introducing Cultural and Historical legacy”

icom-tpmIn a ceremony on 18th, May 2016 for choosing the best and superior museums in Iran, Tehran Peace Museum (TPM) was chosen as the best private museum in “Introducing Cultural and Historical legacy” for the last solar year. A large number of members and staff of Iranian museums and officials from Iranian ICOM (International Council of Museums) were among participants. Since 2012, TPM has been awarded in several items including “Education, Number of Visitors, Creativity & Innovation, Introducing Cultural & Historical Legacy and Collecting Cultural-Historical Belongings”.​

“The educational efforts of the TPM are remarkable” said the president of the ICOM in his visit of the TPM

Logo ICOMOn May 14th, 2016, Professor Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Hinz, the president of the International Council of Museums and his wife visited the Tehran Peace Museum. In this visit, he was accompanied by the officials from the Iranian ICOM.

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The Opening of the “My Face for Peace Exhibition” at TPM

My-face-for-Peace“My face For Peace” Exhibition was opened in the TPM’s Art for Peace Gallery on May 9th, 2016. Distinguished Iranian and Non-Iranian officials were among the participants. This exhibition is a selection of the photographs, collected by Iranian-German artist, Mr. Saeed Dastmalchian and his wife, Cordula and displays 23 photos and their peaceful messages.

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UN Secretary General Message on the Occasion of the Remembrance Day for All Victims of Chemical Warfare

ban-ki-moon-unOn his message on the Occasion of the Remembrance Day for All Victims of Chemical Warfare, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon pays tribute to the victims of chemical weapons and emphasizes on the necessity of abolishing chemical warfare.

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Two Iranian children among the winners of the children’s peace drawing competition

30th-Childrens-Peace-DrawingsTwo Iranian children have been honored by the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum for their entries in the museum’s 30th Children’s Peace Drawing Competition.
Fifteen year old Seyede Saba Mostafavifrom Karaj won the excellence prize in the overseas category and eleven year old Tahereh Mohammad Hosseinifrom Chalouswon the Award of Honor.

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Deputies to OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism Visit TPM

unopcwOn April 21, 2016, Mr. Adrian Neritani and Mr. Eberhard Schanze, deputies to leadership panel of OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) visited TPM. In this visit, the volunteer guides of museum who are the survivors of chemical weapons shared their first hand experiences as a victim with the guests.

JIM was established by UN Security Council Resolution 2235 (2015) in order to investigate the use of chemical weapons in Syria. It is a non-judicial investigative mechanism and its work is bound by impartiality and independence.

The 14th issue of the INMP newsletter is published

The 14th issue of the INMP (International Network of Museums for Peace) Newsletter (March 2016) is published and is now available on the following link.
In this issue of the newsletter, you can find reports and news from the peace museums around the world as well as useful information about the new peace related publications and exhibitions.

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28th Anniversary of Halabja Gas Attack

Halabja28th of March 1988 started as an ordinary day for Halabja, but the events of this day, changed its history for ever.
On 28th of March 1988, around noon time, Saddam Hussein targeted the Kurdish city of Halabja with chemical weapons.
In this attack a cocktail of nerve agents and mustard gas was used and almost 5000 people were killed immediately as a result.

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Saeid Sadeghi

TPM Interviews War Correspondent from Halabja Gas Attacks

S-SadeghiSaeid Sadeghi, an Iranian photojournalist and war correspondent, was covering events from the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988), when he witnessed the heinous chemical gas attacks by Iraqi fighter jets on Halabja on 16th March, 1988. On the 28th anniversary of the attacks, Mr. Sadeghi, in an interview with the Tehran Peace Museum, shares his reflections on life as a war correspondent and his experiences during the attacks on Halabja.

What motivated you to become a war correspondent and photojournalist?

Before the war with Iraq started in 1980, I was a journalist with a newspaper called the Jomhuri Islami. When Iraqi jets dropped bombs on the Mehrabad airport in Tehran, I became so emotional and fired up with passionate nationalism, that I just had to go to the front line and record what was going on.

Some colleagues and I found our way by car down to Khorrramshahr and I spent the war taking photographs and recording the events. When the war started, I believe I was the first photographer at the front.

Can you describe what it is like to be a war correspondent?

For most war correspondents, they go to a war zone, write an article, come back to the paper and get it published. For me, it was a little bit different. I stayed at the front line the whole year round. Only when fighting stopped and there were no major operations did I return to Tehran.

I recorded fighting in all the war zones from the western front up in the North West and right down to the southern sector of the war.

For me, I felt like I was part of the war and I was shooting with my camera. I was a soldier with my camera. My camera was part of my body. I didn’t join the Basij or the Pasdaran, and I had no formal training in fighting, but I did carry a gun. I would turn up at the front line with my camera and my gun.

Before Halabja, had you ever witnessed any gas attacks?

Yes I did. It was in February-March1984 during Operation Kheibar, which is widely known as the Battle of the Marshes, which is located in the Hawizeh Marshes in Iraq, to the north-east of Basra.

Iran eventually won this battle but it was a bit of a Pyrrhic victory for us. We succeeded in removing the Iraqis from the territory, but we lost over 200,000 men in the operation while Iraq lost only 10,000 soldiers.

But, you see, what started to happen after the Iraqis were defeated in an operation, was for them to immediately retaliate by dropping mustard gas bombs on our troops. From 1984 onwards, this became their modus operandi. The prospect of these gas attacks really terrified the Iranian troops. You could see the fear in their eyes.

And that was what I witnessed during Operation Kheibar. I was not personally injured as I was far away from the attack but about 300 Iranian troops were badly exposed. Some of the bombs landed in the watery marshland and did not explode, so I took photographs of them.

But, at that time, I saw for myself what chemical weapons could do: the blisters, the burning skin just peeling off the soldiers’ bodies and I watched some soldiers die a slow and agonizing death.

Can you explain why you were in Halabja in March 1988?

Iranian soldiers had been fighting up in Iraq near Halabja, so a few journalist colleagues and I were up there to record the events. The Iranian soldiers had actually taken control of Halabja the day before the attacks, on the 15th of March.

So, that morning, of 16th March, we were actually in Halabja to take photos of the people of the city. It wasn’t an easy job as the local residents were afraid of the Iranian troops and had locked their doors.

Around lunch time of that day, we went to the outskirts of the city and were taking a break to have something to eat when the gas attacks took place.

Can you describe what happened when the chemical bombs were dropped?

Well, we were about 1 km away from the city centre and trying to eat. There had been quite a bit of bombing in Halabja that day anyway. The Iraqis dropped what we called “noise bombs.” The noise and vibrations from these bombs would shake the city and the Iraqis had been dropping these bombs that same day, before the chemical attack.

So, when the Iraqi airplanes flew over again, we thought it was just another set of noise bombs and really didn’t pay it much attention. But this time, after the bombs were dropped, we saw an enormous white cloud appear. Then the cloud died down and lay low over the city.

Almost everyone in the city was exposed to chemical weapons from these bombs.

How did you react to this chemical attack?

To be honest, we really didn’t understand at the time that it was a chemical attack. It was about an hour later, by the time we had walked into the centre of the city, that we saw what had happened.

As we approached the centre of Halabja, the streets and alleyways were littered with people just lying around. We saw people gasping for air. Some of them were bleeding from their ears, their noses and their mouths.

Then, we saw people – dead – lying where they were at the time of the attack. Women, children, men, old people.

It was horrible.

We tried to help as best we could. We tried to move people around to make them more comfortable. We held them up to help them to breathe and wiped the blood from their mouths and their noses.

I can never forget some victims, staring into our eyes - unable to talk their eyes begged us to help them.

But we didn’t know what to do.

We did move some people into cars. And we did try our best, but during the first hours of the attack there was no help from anyone outside the city.

Later that afternoon, around 4pm, Iranian soldiers came to help. The Iranian military brought helicopters to evacuate the survivors to places like Khorramshahr. We also were transferred there later that day.

As a journalist, how did you record these events?

At first, I didn’t think of taking photographs. I forgot my camera and all I wanted to do was to help these poor people. But, after a while, I felt totally helpless. There was nothing I could do to save them.

It was then that I realized that what I could do was to take photographs and to record this for history - for people to see the truth about what happened in Halabja.

After the bombing, many people thought that it was the Iranians who had attacked Halabja with chemical bombs. People in the West did not believe that Saddam Hussein had attacked his own people with chemical weapons. Tariq Aziz even went on Iraqi television and blamed the Iranians for the gas attacks.

My photographs and the work of my colleagues showed that this was not true.
I felt that I had to focus on the kind of death the people of Halabja suffered. It was a humanitarian disaster and I needed to capture it for the world to see.

I remember being horrified at the sight of women holding their babies in their arms and mothers nursing their infants. Dead. I had to photograph this. People outside of Iran and Iraq needed to see these horrors.

What comes to your mind today when you reflect on the attacks at Halabja?

I regret that I didn’t take more photos of the dying people. I couldn’t help them anyway - they were not going to live. I could have done more for humanity by taking more photos of what actually happened that day.

Some people managed to escape into the mountains, and I did take photographs of those survivors.

But, witnessing these terrible things, I have a different perspective on war. War is the best means to put humans down. You can find nothing but darkness and evil in the world from war. There is no light or good in war.

My aim through my photographs was to show the human side of war, the darkness - the real story.

I believe that at the core of all we do should be to help humanity through kindness and morality. That is the only way to change the world.

Saeid Sadeghi, born in Tabriz in 1955, is an Iranian journalist and photographer. His photographs have been published in a number of books and exhibited widely. He is currently working on a project to find the subjects he photographed during the Iran-Iraq War and incorporate new photographs with the old.

Halabja Photographs taken by Saeid Sadeghi: War Correspondent

March 1986



The young boy at the side of the truck was alive but had climbed into the truck carrying the corpses to the outskirts of the city for mass burial. The Iranians had in the preceding days, captured Halabja and the residents were afraid of them and what they may do to them. In the immediate aftermath of the chemical attack, no one was entirely sure who had perpetrated the crime. The townspeople of Halabja did not know at the time that it was their own government, under orders from Saddam Hussein, who had gassed his own people.


This young boy’s entire family perished in the chemical attack. This young boy had been told by an aunt: “If the Iranians find you, they will kill you.” She instructed the boy to hide in the back of the truck with the corpses.




The lady in this photo is the aunt of the boy in photo #1.  There was a great deal of fear amongst the people of Halabja as Iranian soldiers had taken control of the area.



Photographs of the truck which carried the dead bodies away for burial.



Photo of the same truck with the corpses taken from above.


The people of Halabja ran to find water after the attack. These bodies were people trying to reach the water to drink. People died in the street as they were running away.





People of Halabja trying to reach water.




People of Halabja leaving when they heard the noise bombs, which were dropped before the chemical weapons.




People of Halabja who fled from the noise bombs dropped in the morning.  They fled into the surrounding area and hid in caves. Mr. Sadeghi found the small boy in the picture recently when he went to Halabja for Now Ruz 2015.  He has taken photographs of the man holding this photograph.




This photo was taken in Now Ruz 2015 in Halabja.  This man is pointing to himself as a young boy.




Iranian soldiers who came by helicopter to help people in Halabja.  The soldier who is holding the baby was later killed in action in the war.  Mr. Sadeghi found this soldier’s mother after the war, and she told Saeid that her son had been killed.






 The rescue of people at Halabja by Iranian helicopter corps.  The survivors were sent to cities in and around Kermanshah, such as Sangol. 




Local people running away from the attack.  There were two different groups of people: one group fled over the border into Iran and the other group fled further into the interior of Iraq.  The people in this photograph were heading to Iraq.  The man in the photo had a radio to listen to the Iraqi news. 




A child and an adult found in the street.  One of Mr. Sadeghi’s colleagues placed a blanket on top of the corpse to respect the dignity of the dead person.





This photo as taken around 9 or 10 am when Mr. Sadeghi was exploring the city with his colleagues.  This was before the chemical attack, which took place around midday.




The photo is of a family who died in place, getting on with their ordinary daily routine.




Darbandeh River – a rescue operation.




Iranians are helping people of Halabja outside the city after the attack. The Iranian helicopters helped to ferry people about.




Mr. Sadeghi’s colleague, the journalist Mr. Nateghi, was checking to see if this girl was still alive. She was still breathing at that time.




Woman from Halabja.




A shop that was abandoned during the earlier bombing of the town, before the chemical attack happened.



Children who had died after the chemical attack.



An Iranian soldier and the driver of the truck were loading corpses on to the back of the truck. They took the bodies to be buried. The corpses were piled outside the town and later they were buried in mass graves. There was no time to dig individual graves. Approximately 5000 people died in Halabja that day.




The ones who got away. Many people escaped to either Iran or into Iraq. They did not return to Halabja.




Soldiers are picking up a dead child.




Children of Halabja are waiting for the helicopters from Iran. The Iranian soldiers gave the children balloons to play with. 



A photograph taken before the chemical attack.



Iranian helicopters and soldiers rescuing the people of Halabja.



The memorial cemetery in Halabja today.



The truck that took the corpses away today in the museum at Halabja.



A father and his child who had only just died of asphyxiation.




Interview with Mr SaeidSadeghi at the Tehran Peace Museum (June 2015)
Author: Elizabeth Lewis
Translator: Elaheh Pooyandeh

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Report: The “Peace on Earth” peace drawings exhibition of Bulgarian & Iranian children

bulgarian-news-2016On Wednesday 9th March 2016 the Tehran Peace Museum in collaboration with the Bulgarian Embassy, and Hadis Educational Centre for Children, help the opening of their joint project of a peace drawing exhibition of Bulgarian and Iranian children’s art works in the Art for Peace Gallery of the Tehran Peace Museum.

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The “Peace on Earth” Art Exhibition in the Tehran Peace Museum

Poster-bulgar-timlThe Tehran Peace Museum in collaboration with the Bulgarian Embassy, and Hadis Educational Centre for Children, would like to invite you to their joint project of a peace drawing exhibition of Iranian & Bulgarian children’s art works.

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"Life +1 Day" cast and crew visit the Peace Museum

abdo-yek-roz-TOn Tuesday 16 February 2016, a group of cast and crew of the recently praised film, "Life+1 Day", visited the Tehran Peace Museum (TPM).

In this visit, the artists and filmmakers have learned more on the subjects such as the first and second world wars, as well as the chemical attack against Iranians during the Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988). They also have met the chemical weapons survivors who work as the volunteer guides and narrators of the TPM.

The "Life +1 Day" has won 9 crystal Simorghs in the 34th Fajr International Film Festival, February 2016 and this record was the first time to achieved in this festival's history.

Report: “Peace means…”, the drawings exhibition of Iranian children

mahd-hadis-tiOn 13-15 February 2016 the Tehran Peace Museum in collaboration with the Hadis Educational Centre for Children, held to their seventh joint project of a peace drawing exhibition of Iranian children’s art works.
The “Peace means…” exhibition took place in the Gallery No. 4 of Tehran’s Andisheh Cultural Center and has been widely seen by spectators from different groups of people such as children and their family members, members and active volunteers of Tehran Peace Museum, Dr. Shizuko Tsuya and her colleagues from “MOCT”, the Japanese NPO based in Hiroshima; as well as Dr. Will Parks, United Nations Children’s Fund (unicef) Representative in Iran.

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The “Peace means…” Art Exhibition

Mahd-Hadis-tThe Tehran Peace Museum in collaboration with the Hadis Educational Centre for Children, would like to invite you to their seventh joint project of a peace drawing exhibition of Iranian children’s art works.

The “Peace means…” exhibition will take place on 13-15 February 2016 in the Gallery No. 4 of Tehran’s Andisheh Cultural Centre, Andisheh Park, Shariati Street in Tehran.

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“Peace Counts” Workshop in Tehran Peace Museum

Cover-Persian-newsThe Peace Counts workshop was held in the Tehran Peace Museum on February 2nd, 2016. 15 participants from 6 member organization of the Council for Promoting the Culture of Peace for Children were present in this workshop.

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Mayors for Peace Membership in Iran Exceeds 800

Peace-mayor-logoAccording to the Mayors for Peace secretariat in Hiroshima, as of January 1, 2016, the number of Iranian member cities reached 812. More than 700 new members joined in 2014 and 2015, which represents the largest single-country increase in two years among all countries.

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UN Security Council adopts resolution on Youth, Peace and Security

UN-YPSOn 9 December 2015, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 2250, which for the first time in the history of the UN focuses entirely on the role of youth in peace and security.
The resolution highlights the need to engage young men and women in peace-building, conflict resolution, disarmament, overcoming violence, and preventing terrorism and extremism.

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Happy New Year from your friends in the Tehran Peace Museum

 Dear friends,
Happy New Year! We wish you a nice and peaceful year ahead!
May love be in our life, may hope be in our heart, may peace be in our world... .

Peace seeds in the National Botanical Garden

Green-LegacyThe seeds of the Ginkgo are our guests again; and Iran’s National Botanical Garden, with the guidance and presence of one of the volunteers of the Tehran Peace Museum, is the host. They are the seeds of Hiroshima's Ginkgo tree, collected in 2015 from the mother tree located in Shukkeien Garden less than 1.5 kilometers from the hypocenter of the atomic bomb attack (1945). 

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"Peace Counts" exhibition and workshops in Tehran's universities

Cover-Persian-newsFaculty of Law and Political Sciences of Allameh Tabatabai University in Tehran hosted the "Peace Counts" exhibition on 13-20 December, 2015. The exhibition was organized in collaboration with the Tehran Peace Museum on the occasion of the National Research Week. 

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