Violent protests in Iran leave 13 dead
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Protests across Iran saw their most violent night as “armed protesters” tried to overrun military bases and police stations before security forces repelled them, killing 10 people, Iranian state television said Monday.
The demonstrations, the largest to strike Iran since its disputed 2009 presidential election, have seen five days of unrest across the country and a death toll of at least 13 with the slaying of a police officer announced late Monday.
The protests began Thursday in Mashhad over economic issues and have expanded to several cities, with some protesters chanting against the government and the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Hundreds of people have been arrested.
Iranian state television aired footage of a ransacked private bank, broken windows, overturned cars and a fire truck that appeared to have been set ablaze. It said 10 people were killed by security forces during clashes Sunday night.
“Some armed protesters tried to take over some police stations and military bases but faced serious resistance from security forces,” state TV said.
In a later report, state TV said killed six people were killed in the western town of Tuyserkan, 185 miles southwest of Tehran, and three in the town of Shahinshahr, 195 miles south of Tehran. It did not say where the 10th person was killed.
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. He said the cause of death wasn’t immediately known, though authorities later described one of the deaths as the result of a personal dispute.
Late Monday, Iran’s semi-official Mehr news agency said an assailant using a hunting rifle killed a policeman and wounded three other officers during a demonstration in the central city of Najafabad, about 200 miles south of Tehran. The slaying marked the first security force member to be killed in the unrest.