One killed, several injured in Iranian gasoline protests — report
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One killed, several injured in Iranian gasoline protests — report

Sirjan’s acting governor says unclear if demonstrator was shot; security forces only had permission to fire warning shots

Iranians fill their vehicles at a gas station in Tehran, on November 15, 2019. (STR / AFP)
Iranians fill their vehicles at a gas station in Tehran, on November 15, 2019. (STR / AFP)

TEHRAN, Iran — One civilian was killed and others injured in the Iranian city of Sirjan, the semi-official news agency ISNA said Saturday, a day after protests in the central city over a gasoline price hike.

“Unfortunately someone was killed,” Sirjan’s acting governor Mohammad Mahmoudabadi said in the report, adding that the cause of the death and whether “the individual was shot or not” was still unclear.

Other people were injured during the demonstrations, he said.

Mahmoudabadi emphasized that “security forces did not have permission to shoot and were only allowed to fire warning shots… which they did.”

He said it was a “calm gathering” that was exploited by some who “destroyed public property, damaged fuel stations and also wanted to access the oil company’s main fuel depots and set fire to them.”

In this Saturday, December 30, 2017 file photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, a university student attends a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by anti-riot Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran. (AP Photo)

Their effort was thwarted by forces including the police, the Revolutionary Guards and the Basij militia, ISNA quoted him as saying.

Iran imposed gasoline rationing and raised pump prices by at least 50 percent on Friday, saying the move was aimed at helping citizens in need with cash handouts.

Under the scheme, drivers will pay 15,000 rials (13 US cents) a liter for the first 60 liters of petrol bought each month, with each additional liter costing them 30,000 rials.

“Scattered” protests against the measure also broke out in other cities including Abadan, Ahvaz, Bandar Abbas, Birjand, Gachsaran, Khoramshahr, Mahshahr, Mashhad and Shiraz, according to state news agency IRNA.

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