Iran Burning, Pt. 7


Violence in Iran has escalated to unprecedented levels.  Reports from people on the ground there claim that people are being “crudely killed” and that the “Basij forces and police were killing young people like animals.”  In southern Tehran, supporters of opposition candidate Mir-Hossein Mousavi set on fire a building used by backers of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

The AP is reporting that dozens of protesters were seriously beaten during one protest at Tehran University:

The witnesses told The Associated Press that between 50 and 60 protesters were seriously beaten by police and pro-government militia and taken to Imam Khomeini hospital in central Tehran. People could be seen dragging away comrades bloodied by baton strikes. Helicopters hovered over central Tehran. Ambulance sirens echoed through the streets and black smoke rose over the city. Tehran University was cordoned off by police and militia while students inside the university chanted ‘death to the dictator,’ witnesses said.

And there was another clash near Revolutionary Square:

Eyewitnesses described fierce clashes near Revolution Square in central Tehran after some 3,000 protesters chanted “Death to the dictator!” and “Death to dictatorship!” Police responded with tear gas and water cannons, the witnesses said.

As well as a supposed bombing at a shrine dedicated to Ayatollah Khomeini:

English-language state TV said a blast at the Tehran shrine of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini had killed one persona and wounded two but the report could not be independently confirmed due to government restrictions on independent reporting.

This video shows protesters clashing with police:

And The Guardian reports:

An eyewitness in Enghelab square reports around 20,000 riot police, made up of Basiji militiamen and soldiers, and armed with rifles, tear gas and water cannons.

The eyewitness saw dozens of people beaten by riot police in an attempt to frighten them into evacuating the square, with one young man being beaten to the ground by four policemen.

The protesters were not wearing the green insignia that signifies support for Mousavi, and were not making victory signs or chanting.

The eyewitness reports riot police attacking people on passing motorbikes and, on occasion, innocent passersby who have no way of escaping the heavy police presence. Nonetheless, there are thousands of Mousavi supporters, marching peacefully near the square, where rthey have been subjected to these brutal reprisals from the police.