Iran forces filmed shooting fleeing protesters
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Horrifying footage posted last night showed regime forces in Iran “using heavy machine guns mounted on the back of a pick-up van”. Video shared online and verified by the BBC captured the moment regime forces chased down protesters, who desperately fled away from the van on foot. The incident took place in the city of Baneh, in the western Kurdistan province of Iran, as the protests in the country enter their 29th day.
Bahman Kalbasi, a reporter for BBC Persian Service, shared a clip of the incident, adding: “Horrific video from earlier tonight that shows regime forces are now using heavy machine guns mounted on the back of a pickup van as they chase and shoot protesters. This happened in the city of Baneh, in Kurdistan province.”
In the clip, bangs can be heard as the white pick-up truck chases people down the street late at night.
Kurdistan has borne the brunt of the fierce crackdowns in the country since mass protests swept the nation.
Last night, other clips shared online showed people blocking roads to stop the movement of riot police in the city of Mahabad.
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Another video on social media recorded gunshots and teargas in Ahvaz in the southwestern Khuzestan province.
At least 37 protesters were injured by security forces and 19 were arrested in several other western cities, according to the France-based Kurdistan Human Rights Network.
According to the Centre for Human Rights in Iran, there have been arrests and interrogations of school children accused of joining the protests, with their detention in so-called “psychological centers”.
At least 201 people have been killed since the protests and subsequent crackdown began, according to Norway-based Iran Human Rights organisation.
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Demonstrations have been reported in more than 110 cities across the Middle Eastern country.
One of the organising groups the Youth of Tehran Neighborhoods called for another round of nationwide protests on Saturday.
The unrest erupted last month when 22-year-old Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, died in police custody.
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Ms Amini had been arrested by Iran’s morality police for allegedly wearing her hijab, or headscarf, “improperly”.
She collapsed after being taken to a detention centre and died three days later.
Iranian officials claim she died from an underlying health condition, but her family say she died after being beaten on her head and body.
Earlier this week, Ali Larijani, an adviser to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, became the first senior political figure to publicly call for a rethink on the hijab code.
The former parliamentary speaker rebuked the government’s crackdown on women and girls as “not the cure”.
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