Qom (Persian: Qom [ɢom], also known as Q'um or Ghom) is a city in Iran. It lies 156 km (97 mi) by road southwest of Tehran and is the capital of Qom Province. At the 2006 census, its population was 957,496, in 241,827 families. It is situated on the banks of the Qom River.
Qom is considered holy by Shi'a Islam, as it is the site of the shrine of Fatema Mæ'sume, sister of Imam `Ali ibn Musa Rida (Persian Imam Reza, 789–816 AD). The city is the largest center for Shi'a scholarship in the world, and is a significant destination of pilgrimage.
Shortly after authorizing a missile attack against Israel, the incumbent Grand Ayatollah was preaching to his flock in Qom about how his people would slaughter the infidels. In the midst of his sermon, the Ayatollah dropped dead, apparently of divine intervention.
Later, after Tel Aviv and Tehran were reported destroyed by Israeli nuclear strikes, there were unconfirmed reports of a "flash of sunlike light" over the city of Qom, and all communications with it were lost.