An eye witness told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that the number of police and plainclothes forces present at public protests in Tehran today was considerably larger than on 14 February. He said that in some city squares large groups of police forces appeared on alert. “They had equipped 15-16 year-old boys with clubs and vests and lined them up on the side of the streets, so that they would beat people if they came,” he said. The presence of under-18 individuals among the police forces, some of whom were visibly small-built, was confirmed by two other independent eye witnesses.
News agencies close to the government confirmed the arrest of Faezeh Hashemi, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani’s daughter. She was released after a few hours.
The eye witness also told the Campaign that he did not observe any violence between Abbas Abad Intersection and Vanak Square on Vali-e Asr Avenue, where he observed people walking toward the state television station. Another eye witness told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that police forces have closed down Eskan residential/shopping complex on the corner of Mirdamad and Vali-e-Asr Avenue, and people inside the complex are not allowed to leave. According to the source, several protesters and individuals who had been chanting slogans earlier, entered the shopping center under the complex. It is not clear whether the building was closed to keep the protesters from entering, or in order to trap the protesters inside.
“During the hours leading to darkness the number of protesters kept growing and security forces used ammunition and tear gas for dispersing the crowd,” another eye witness told the Campaign.
Use of amunition by the police was further confirmed by another eye witness. Several sources reported that today’s main slogan was “Death to Dictator.”