Iran Erupts: Shots Fired at Defiant Iranian Protesters

According to the AP, some 3,000 students held a nighttime gathering Sunday, chanting, "Death to the dictator." The crowd then began to throw rocks and Molotov cocktails at assembled police officers who fired back with plastic bullets and tear gas, according to a student eyewitness who spoke to the AP.

The student, who would only give his first name, Akbar, out of fears for his safety, told the AP that the crowd threw stones and bricks at the police and set a truck and other vehicles on fire. Hardline, pro-Ahmadinejad volunteers retaliated by ransacking dorm rooms, smashing furniture and computers with axes and sticks, before policemen grabbed memory cards and computer software. Police left at around 4 a.m., according to Akbar.

"Many students are now leaving to go home to their families, they are scared," he told the AP. "But others are staying. The police and militia say they will be back and arrest any students they see."

"I want to stay because they beat us and we won't retreat," he added.

Tehran University was the site of serious clashes against student-led protests in 1999 and is one of the nerve centers of the pro-reform movement in Iran. Today's rally by Mousavi supporters was meant to commence there.

Young Iranians Clash With Police; Cops Fight Back With Tear Gas

It was a weekend full of turmoil here, the protests sparked when the government declared hard-liner Ahmadinejad the landslide winner over his more moderate challenger, Mirhossein Mousavi, who many here believed had been leading the race.

Through the night, young Iranians set the streets on fire, venting their anger at an election they insist was stolen by the incumbent president.

The violence continued today as demonstrators were attacked by police with tear gas and batons. We saw young women sprayed in the face with pepper spray, and armor-clad police attacking protesters from the backs of speeding motorcycles. The police revoked our permission to film, so we recorded the protests on our cell-phones.

Crowds of protestors lashed back with sticks, rocks and seemingly anything they could get their hands on. Protestors forced police officers off a motorcycle and burned it. Demonstrators expressed their anger, with one saying, "This election will not stand. ? We are angry. ? We have been cheated." Over the weekend, crowds gathered, chanting, "Down, down with the dictator," referring to the president.

Near the opposition protests Sunday, President Ahmadinejad made a show of his own popular support. Tens of thousands of people filled a central Tehran square, expressing their fervent support of the sitting president. There were no police present at this gathering.

At the pro-government demo Sunday, a young female chador-clad supporter of the president told us "these people, millions of them, they like the president." She added that she had cast her vote in favor of Ahmadinejad.

At a press conference, the president dismissed the opposition protestors, comparing them to excited crowds after a soccer match.

Mousavi is now left with dwindling options. Two presidential candidates, Mousavi and Karroubi, have now officially challenged the election results. Mousavi has asked clerics to declare a fatwa and asked the country's powerful religious leaders to reverse the results.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
PHOTO: U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston stopped a would be smuggler from bringing nearly 7 ounces of cocaine into the country in tamales, Aug. 22, 2014.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
In this image from video posted on Facebook, courtesy of the George W. Bush Presidential Center, former President George W. Bush participates in the ice bucket challenge with the help of his wife, Laura Bush, in Kennebunkport, Maine.
(Courtesy George W. Bush Presidential Center/AP)
Real Housewife Phaedra Parks Lists Home in Suburban Atlanta
Real Housewives of Atlanta star, Phaedra Parks, has listed her 4,000-square-foot home with 5 bedrooms and 6 baths for $340,900.