Violence in Iran increases
Sunday, June 21, 2009
In the past day the violence has increased in Iran. It started this morning with a suicide bombing attack on a shrine of Iran's revolutionary leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. The bombing was most likely planned at the shrine to anger Iranians because they revere Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini as the founder of the Islamic Republic. The attacker and another person were killed in the blast, which succeeded in wounding eight pilgrims.
Later in the afternoon, a witness reported that she was on her way to a protest in Revolution Square with a group of people, but was blocked by a row of riot police in central Tehran. The group of protesters sat down in defiance of police. She stated that helicopters hovered above the group of roughly 300 before the protesters were forced to disperse due to tear gas.
Another eyewitness who was able to arrive to Revolution Square reported that there were about 20,000 riot police officers all around Tehran, made up of Basiji militiamen and soldiers, armed with rifles, tear gas, and water cannons. The riot police outnumbered the 3,000 protesters who were able to arrive.
There have also been reports that an innocent elderly man and younger female were both shot and killed. These are two of over 150 deaths, according to unconfirmed reports, over the last seven days.
- Marie Colvin. "Tehran protestors defy tear gas" — The Sunday Times, June 21, 2009
- "Witnesses: Troops used batons, tear gas, water cannon" — CNN, June 20, 2009
- "Bomb kills two at Khomeini shrine: Iran TV" — Reuters, June 20, 2009
- Ralph Boulton. "Iran opposition leader calls for purge of 'lies'" — Reuters, June 20, 2009
- "Chaos prevails as protesters, police clash in Iranian capital" — CNN, June 20, 2009