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Iran's security clamp-down in Ahwaz leads to arrests and shootings

The Iranian regime has arrested a number of Ahwazis and massively increased the presence of Baseej paramilitaries following the assassination of a senior police commander in the ethnically Arab city of Abadan.

The regime this week announced that it had arrested a group of six Ahwazi "separatists", claiming they are Sunni extremists (click here for Baztab report). It is unclear whether the men are among the Ahwazis arrested earlier this month, who were accused of being British agents (click here for report).

The Baztab website, which is owned by Mohsen Rezai, a former commander of Iran's elite Islamic Revolutionary Guards, reports that Baseejis have been sent to guard the Azadegan oilfield from bomb attacks. The Baseej commander in Ahwaz, Colonel Karim Karimi, has deployed around 300 Baseej paramilitaries to protect oil facilities.

Meanwhile, according to Khuzestan TV, an Ahwazi youth, Mohammad Jasem Sawari, was shot dead by Iranian intelligence officers who claimed he was responsible for killing Colonel Amiri in Abadan's Ghosba district. Sawari is from Shilangabad (Hay Al-Thurah) district.

Ahwazi activists state that the Iranian regime is using national security as a pretext to terrorise the Arab population and perform summary executions.