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Latest On Continuing Unrest In Iran - Basij Enters The Foray To Crack Down

An Iranian woman raises her fist amid the smoke of tear gas at the University of Tehran during a protest driven by anger over economic problems, in the capital Tehran on December 30, 2017.

Unrest in various cities in Iran continued Saturday evening. In many locations in Tehran protests took place against the Islamic Republic and the dire economic conditions in the country.

Video clips have circulated showing protests in Tehran’s Towhid square where people were shouting, “Death to Khamenei” and “Referendum, Referendum”.

After midnight local time, it was not clear if protests were still continuing in Tehran, but a commander of Islamic Revolution Guard Corps, IRGC in Tehran claimed that control has been re-established in the capital. General Mohammad Kosari added that Basij forces have come to the assistance of police forces and individuals who are responsible for the unrest “must answer to the people”.

However, as night fell, there were reports of more unrest in more locations in the country, including Arak, Bandar Abbas, Kermanshah Dezful and Khorramabad.

Reports indicated that security forces fired on protesters in the town of Dorood in Lorestan province and people were wounded or killed..

Voice of America reporter Shahed Alawi told Radio Farda that he spoke with the families of two victims, killed by bullets fired by the security forces.

There are also reports that all or part of mobile internet has been blocked by the authorities. This means that protesters will be unable to use social media to communicate or receive news about events elsewhere.

In past disturbances the Islamic Republic has resorted to similar tactics, by slowing down internet connections or jamming radio and TV signals from the VOA, Radio Farda or the BBC.

Meanwhile, Iran’s former queen Farah Pahlavi has issued a statement calling for solidarity with the nation and respect for the fundamental rights of the people.

Those media outlets in Iran that are connected with the IRGC have begun a campaign of accusing protesters for destruction of public property. Radio Farda is treating all news and images of arson and similar acts with caution, as it is difficult to tell the difference between real events and provocations.

There have been unconfirmed reports that the prosecutor’s office was set ablaze in Karaj, just west of Tehran. There are also reports of fires in Mashhad.