Iran: Two officers of the Revolutionary Guards shot dead in Zahedan

Iran: Two Revolutionary Guard officers shot dead in Zahedan

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Two members of the Revolutionary Guards, Iran's ideological army, were shot and killed on Tuesday by unidentified people in Zahedan in the southwest, Tasnim news agency reported, almost three weeks after violence in the city. 

“Colonel Mehdi Molashahi and Javad Kikha, members of the Guardians in the province of Sistan-Baluchistan, were shot dead by unidentified people in the city of Zahedan”, the agency said, adding that the authorities have opened an investigation for identify the perpetrators of the attack.

The incident occurred after violence on September 30 in this city, located in one of the poorest regions of Iran, resulted in dozens of dead, including members of the security forces.

Initially, state media accused “extremists” of being behind attacks on police stations.

However, an influential Sunni religious leader in Sistan-Balochistan, Molavi Abdol Hamid, accused the security forces of having fired “at people gathered around a mosque”. According to him, the tensions began after a “case of alleged rape of a teenager by a police officer”.

Hundreds of people took to the streets in Zahedan on Friday and shouted anti-authority slogans, according to videos posted on social media.

Local police reported the arrest of 57 “rioters” after this demonstration, according to the official news agency Irna.

Bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan, the province of Sistan-Baluchistan is a deprived region of Iran and frequent scene of attacks or clashes between security forces and armed groups.

The violence in Zahedan came at a time when Iran has been rocked by a protest movement since the death of Mahsa Amini, an Iranian Kurd from 22, who died on September 16, three days after she was arrested in Tehran by vice police for violating the Islamic Republic's strict dress code.

Dozens of people, mostly protesters but also members of the security forces, were killed lo rs of these demonstrations. Hundreds more, including women, have been arrested.