Hundreds arrested as Ayatollah Ali Khamenei blames Iran's 'enemies' for unrest

The Iranian regime accused Britain, the US and Saudi Arabia of fomenting protests in the country as government forces struggled to contain the increasingly violent and widespread unrest. In his first public comments since protests began six days ago, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei blamed the uprising on the “enemies of Iran” and said foreign governments were sending money and weapons to undermine the Islamic Republic. “The enemy is always looking for an opportunity and any crevice to infiltrate and strike the Iranian nation,” he said. At least 21 people have been killed since last Thursday, including a police officer and a Revolutionary Guardsman, and the violence appeared to be intensifying as security forces fired on crowds and demonstrators attacked police stations. While President Hassan Rouhani initially offered conciliatory words, saying the protesters had legitimate grievances over the state of the economy, the government’s stance has hardened in recent days. Smoke and fire spots are seen during a protest in Tuyserkan, Iran, in this still image taken from video on December 31 Credit: REUTERS The head of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court warned that protesters could face the death penalty if convicted of moharebeh, waging war against God, while state television said those arrested after the first 48 hours of demonstrations would be treated more severely. Around 1,000 people have been arrested so far, authorities said. Kellyanne Conway, Donald Trump’s senior advisor, said the White House was considering new sanctions on Iran in response to its crackdown on the protesters. The sanctions would likely take aim at the Revolutionary Guard, the regime’s elite forces which also control major business interests. Ali Shamkhani, one of Iran’s top security officials, said that Britain, the US and Saudi Arabia were behind the protests and had generated many …read more

Source:: Yahoo News

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