World News

Iranian police arrest 100 protesters in capital as crackdown intensifies

Iranian police arrest 100 protesters in capital as crackdown intensifies

Nationwide protests in Iran turned violent last night as armed protesters tried to overrun military bases and police stations.

The ministry said Iran's sovereignty should be respected and no one should interfere in Tehran's internal affairs.

Since the ruthless repression of the 2009 protests against a disputed presidential election that gave hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a second term, many middle-class Iranians have abandoned hope of securing change from the streets. Its mandate is to safeguard the Islamic Revolution, which in 1979 overthrew the shah and installed Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

President Hassan Rouhani has acknowledged the public's anger over the Islamic Republic's flagging economy, though he and others warned that the government wouldn't hesitate to crack down on those it considers lawbreakers.

Iran is still witnessing a wave of demonstrations, which are being held in many cities across the country.

In a later report, state TV said killed six people were killed in the western town of Tuyserkan, 295 kilometres (185 miles) southwest of Tehran, and three in the town of Shahinshahr, 315 kilometres (195 miles) south of Tehran.

Around 100 people were arrested overnight in the same region, Iranian state television reported.

As anti-government protests continued in Iran for the fifth consecutive day between the Iranian security forces and protestors, the official death roll has risen to 20. Reuters could not immediately verify the authenticity of the footage. The Fars news agency reported "scattered groups" of protesters in Tehran on Monday and said a ringleader had been arrested.

Unsigned statements on social media urged Iranians to continue to demonstrate in 50 towns and cities.

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Iran blocked access to Instagram and the popular messaging app Telegram used by activists to organize in response to the growing spirit of protest, although some have still managed to use it to smuggle images out of the country. "This is what causes the regime to restrict internet access, tear down satellite dishes, shoot unarmed student protestors and imprison political reformers".

Iran is a major OPEC oil producer and regional power deeply involved in Syria and Iraq as part of a battle for influence with rival Saudi Arabia.

"I heard today Iran's President Rohani's claim that Israel is behind the protests in Iran", Netanyahu said in the 90 second video.

Earlier Monday, the semi-official ILNA news agency quoted Hedayatollah Khademi, a representative for the town of Izeh, as saying two people died there Sunday night.

"In this context, we believe the statement of President [Hassan] Rouhani [of Iran] that people have a right to peaceful protest but the law should not be violated and that public property should not be harmed should be taken into account, and violence and provocation should be avoided".

Nearly nine years since the "Green movement" reformist protests were crushed by the state, Iran's adversaries voiced their support for the resurgence of anti-government sentiment.

President Trump wrote in one of his tweets: 'Many reports of peaceful protests by Iranian citizens fed up with regime's corruption and its squandering of the nation's wealth to fund terrorism overseas. 'They are hungry for food & for freedom. It is true that Iranians face sustained hardship right now, something worsened by a recent decision to raise food prices.

"The entire world understands that the good people of Iran want change", Trump said at the United Nations, emphasizing that "Iran's people are what their leaders fear the most".

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