'Ten killed' in Iran protests

Iranian students clash with riot police during an anti-government protest around the University of Tehran, Iran, on December 30, 2017.

Up to 400 people are reported to have been arrested in recent days, including 200 in Tehran on Saturday night.

In Iran, antigovernment protests are in their fourth day, and the powerful Revolutionary Guard is warning demonstrators will pay the price.

Two people were shot dead in demonstrations in Iran on Sunday evening, bringing the death toll to four.

It also said the Iranian government would crack down on those who were spreading negative propaganda against the country.

A wave of spontaneous protests over Iran's weak economy swept into Tehran on Saturday, with college students and others chanting against the government just hours after hard-liners held their own rally in support of the Islamic Republic's clerical establishment.

"I do not know whether yesterday's shooting was done by rally participants or the police and this issue is being investigated", Khademi was quoted by ILNA as saying.

So far, security forces appear to have shown some restraint, in an apparent attempt to avoid escalating tensions.

In his first public comments since the demonstrations broke out, the Iranian president, speaking at a cabinet meeting, said that citizens were "completely free to make criticism and even protests". Correspondents say it would be a significant escalation were they to become officially involved in policing the protests.

In his remarks Mr Rouhani acknowledged popular grievances, though he warned that the government would show "no tolerance for those who damage public properties, violate public order and create unrest in the society".

On Twitter, President Trump has sought to portray the unrest as the direct result of "Iranian citizens fed up with regime's corruption & its squandering of the nation's wealth to fund terrorism overseas". Demonstrators accused former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of stealing the election and blocking genuine democratic movements.

In total, at least 50 protesters have been arrested since Thursday.


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