Three days after anti-government demonstrators took to the streets of cities across Iran in protest against a surge in the prices of basic food supplies, tension reached on Saturday the heart of the capital, Tehran, despite government warnings.
Security forces killed at least three protestors during the rallies, which began at first on Thursday in Mashhad, the country's second-largest city, and later spread Saturday to Tehran, where marchers escalated their campaigns against the regime by burning the photos of Supreme leader Ali Khamenei and commander of Failaq al-Quds, Qassem Suleimani, in addition to government buildings.
Marchers began arriving to the centers of Iranian cities in the first hours of Saturday night, according to a timetable arranged by activists and posted on social media.
In the center of Tehran, university students advanced in the streets of Wali al-Aser and Inqilab, chanting slogans against the regime and Kahmenei, whom they described as “dictator.”
The students also asked the Army to intervene and protect them against security forces personnel who confronted the protestors with tear gas.
Eyewitnesses said that at least 3 demonstrators were killed on Saturday after trying to break into a town hall in the center of the country, while two other protestors were hit by security forces gunshots in Khorramabad.
The anti-government protests that continued in Iran for a third day, spread Saturday to the south, particularly in the city of Ahwaz, where protestors burned three banks at the sound of gun shooting.
Other protests were also sparked in Kashan, Arak, Bandar Abbas, Kerman Zanjan, Khorramabad, Ardabil and others.
Meanwhile, Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli has urged people to refrain from joining “illegal gatherings” in the country, AFP reported.
For the first time on Saturday, Iran’s state television commented on the protests by displaying some photos of the marches, saying it was necessary to listen to the “legitimate demands” of the people.