Iran says two Guards, paramilitary killed in ‘riots’

TEHRAN (AFP): Two Iranian Revolutionary Guards and a paramilitary were killed by “rioters” during protests commemorating those slain in 2019 street violence over fuel price hikes, state media said Wednesday.

Col. Reza Almasi was shot dead on Tuesday by unidentified “rioters” in Bukan, a Kurdish-majority town in Iran’s northwestern province of West Azerbaijan, the official IRNA news agency said.

The other Guards member, Reza Azabar, died after being shot in Kamyaran, a city in the western province of Kurdistan, IRNA reported.

A member of the Guards-linked Basij paramilitary force was hit by a Molotov cocktail during “riots” in the southern city of Shiraz on Tuesday night, the news agency added.

Dozens of members of the security forces have been killed in protests that erupted in Iran after the death in morality police custody of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd.

Since the start of the protests, more than 2,000 people have been charged, half of them in Tehran, according to the judiciary, which since Sunday has handed down two death sentences over the unrest.