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Protesters Battered, Detained Says Opposition Group

Iranian students of Azad University protesting over transportation problem on Saturday December 29, 2018.

A group of protesters who rallied outside Tehran University on Monday, December 31, 2018, have been severely battered by the Islamic Republic's security forces and several arrested, a website promoting Iran Green Movement reported on Tuesday, January 8.

The website, Kalemeh, says, all detainees were placed behind bars in political blocks of Tehran's notorious Evin prison. The report does not specify the number of those arrested.

Women among detainees, including a 65-year-old lady, are so critically beaten up that one of them cannot stand on her feet, and another has lost her balance because of a head injury, Kalemeh reported.

The protesters were assembled outside Tehran University to protest a bus crash, killing ten.

The bus hired by one of the largest universities in Iran, Islamic Azad University, was carrying 30 students along a mountainous road within the university's Science and Research branch campus when on December 25, 2018, it drove off the road and hit a concrete pole.

University officials initially blamed the crash on the driver having a stroke. The coroner's office later denied that claim.

Many students pointed to the aging bus fleet the university has hired from a private company and poor maintenance of the vehicles.

The accident led to days of protests by thousands of students both on the university campus and on Tehran’s streets.

During the protest on Monday, the students were chanting, “Have no fear, we’re all together,” “neither threats nor prison, can deter us,” and “death to the dictator.”

Referring to the political advisor of the Islamic Republic's Supreme Leader who is also the head of the board of trustees of the Islamic Azad University, and former Foreign Minister, Ali Akbar Velayati, they also chanted, “Velayati, Velayati, you are responsible for this crime”; “Incompetent official, resign, resign!”, “The incompetent one in charge should be tried!”

Plainclothesmen stormed the rally, firing teargas canisters to disperse the crowd.

However, the political and security deputy of the Governor of Tehran, Abdol Azim Rezaei had earlier insisted that none of the protesters were arrested.

Tehran has been the scene of several protest rallies in recent weeks.

While tens of thousands of teachers and workers are demanding their rights across Iran, an advisor to the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Chief Commander, Ali Mohammad Naeini has cautioned that turmoil is waiting to happen in coming Iranian new year (beginning March 21).