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Iran deploys riot police as anti-government backlash grows

The Guardian reports:

Riot police have been deployed in parts of Tehran the morning after tear gas was used to clear the streets of protesters angry at the government’s having mistakenly shot down a passenger jet killing all 176 people on board.

Images of dozens of demonstrators taking to the streets in the capital and other cities including Esfahan were circulating on social media on Sunday morning and activists were calling for mass mourning rallies, raising the possibility of fresh clashes between protesters and security forces.

Pro-regime protesters also gathered outside the UK embassy calling for its closure after the British ambassador to Iran was briefly detained on Saturday evening after leaving the site of a demonstration.

Several Iranian media outlets on Sunday joined a chorus of domestic and international criticism for both the shooting down of the airliner on Wednesday morning and the subsequent days of official denials that an Iranian missile was responsible.

Footage from the Iranian capital showed police in riot gear and on motorcycles massed in public squares and lining the entrances to the University of Tehran, one of the sites where hundreds turned out for protests on Saturday night chanting for prosecutions and a referendum on the country’s theocratic system. [Continue reading…]

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