Some 260 people, including three Europeans, were arrested during the dispersal of an event outside the Iranian capital, Tehran, local news agencies reported Friday, citing a police statement.

Police arrested “146 men and 115 women” who were “in an undesirable and obscene state with emblems, signs and symbols of satanism on their clothes, head, face and hair,” the statement said.

The nationalities of the Europeans involved were not immediately known.

Alcohol, psychoactive substances and 73 vehicles were also seized in the overnight raid on a “satanist network,” police told Iran’s Fars news agency. A 25-second video posted by the agency showed a scene from a gathering resembling a techno event.

The Tasnim news agency also published photos alongside its report showing masks, what appeared to be model skulls, and T-shirts with skulls on them.
Fight against ‘satanism’ in Iran

Raids on so-called “satanist” gatherings are not uncommon in the deeply conservative Islamic republic, often targeting parties or concerts with alcohol, which is largely banned in Iran.

In July 2009, police in the northwestern province of Ardebil arrested three people for “worshipping satan.”

In May of the same year, Iranian media reported that 104 “satan worshipers” were arrested in a raid on a concert in the southern city of Shiraz, where people were allegedly drinking alcohol and “sucking blood.”

In 2007, police arrested 230 people in a raid on an illegal rock concert in a garden near Tehran.

Authorities in the Shiite-Muslim-dominated country have branded rock and heavy metal concerts as satanist gatherings in the past.

Source » dw