Iranian authorities say 2 killed, 2 arrested after attack

CAIRO (AP): Iranian authorities said Wednesday that two suspects were killed and two more were arrested in connection with a shooting that left seven people dead at a bazaar last month in the country’s southwest.

IRNA, Iran’s official state news agency, said the two suspects killed were among the perpetrators of the market shooting in the Iranian city of Izeh last month. The report said two others accused of being involved in the attack were arrested in the same operation, led by the Revolutionary Guard and the Country’s Intelligence Ministry.

Iranian authorities provided no further details about when the operation took place. They offered no evidence that the four men were involved in the attack. News of the security operation was first announced by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard in a statement published on Tuesday.

It remains unclear what motivated the gun attack in Izeh, or if it is linked to the nationwide protests that have rocked the country since late September. Iranian authorities labeled the incident a “terrorist” attack but have not accused any particular group of being behind the shooting.

Iranian state TV has in the past said that two gunmen on motorbikes opened fire at Izeh’s Bazaar on the evening of Nov. 16. Around the same time, protesters had gathered in different areas of the city, chanting anti-government slogans and throwing rocks at the police, it reported.

Nationwide demonstrations ignited across Iran in late September after the death of a 22-year-old woman who was being held by the country’s morality police. The protests have since morphed into calls for the overthrow of Iran’s ruling clerics and an end to the theocracy established after the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

At least 506 people have been killed in the countrywide demonstrations amid the government crackdown, according to Human Rights Activists in Iran, a group that’s been monitoring the protests since they began.