Videos of overwhelming police presence and arrests in Iran prevent protests

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Multiple reports received from Iran say several people among those who had visited a cemetery near Tehran in remembrance of protesters killed in November were arrested on December 26.

Families of victims, activists and protesters declared December 26, which coincides with the 40th day of the killing of Pouya Bakhtiari, a young protester shot in the head on November 16 and many others killed across the country, as a day to commemorate the victims of the November protests across Iran.

Since last night, security forces were swarming the streets in many cities and towns to intimidate people from gathering, fearing a new round of protests.

On Thursday, this show of force was more evident in many places.

It is not clear how many people were arrested at the Behesht Sakineh cemetery near Tehran, but Rahele Tarani who lives in Canada told Radio Farda her sister, Houriyeh Tarani was arrested when she was visiting the cemetery to pay homage to their brother who was killed ten years ago during anti-government protests in 2009.

Meanwhile, a group of prominent movie directors visited the cemetery as a sign of defiance but were not detained.

Security forces were present all over the cemetery, with armored vehicles and water cannons. The entrance was guarded by three busloads of plainclothesmen and Basij (Baseej) paramilitary forces. Eventually people were dispersed.

Special riot police on motorbikes and masked men patrolled many parts of Tehran. Certain thoroughfares were packed by security forces, to prevent any gathering of protesters, who in November had started their action by blocking major roads.

The same kind of overwhelming police presence was evident in Isfahan and in many other cities where large protests took place in November.

Thanks to his outspoken and brave family the 27-year-old Pouya has turned into an icon of the November protests. His parents and several of his relatives including an 11-year-old cousin were arrested on December 24 for refusing to accept the demands of the security officials not to hold a public 40th day memorial for Pouya at his graveside.

Partial internet service interruptions continued on Thursday by the authorities to reduce the chance of people coordinating their actions on social media and also sending of photos and videos abroad. Nevertheless, many images were uploaded on social media.

Source » radiofarda

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