World News

Iran security forces clash with protesters: witness

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran security forces clashed with supporters of opposition leader Mirhossein Mousavi and arrested at least 10 of them during annual anti-Israel rallies in central Tehran on Friday, a witness said.

“Security forces just arrested over 10 people,” the witness said. “They are pushing protesters and beating them.”

Iranian authorities, including Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, had warned the opposition against turning anti-Israel rallies to street protests against the clerical establishment.

Defeated presidential candidates Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi said they would attend the rally.

Thousands of supporters of Mousavi, wearing green wristbands or shawls, were among the crowds marching in the “Qods (Jerusalem) Day” rallies held nationwide every year on the last Friday of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

“Death to the dictators,” and “Not Gaza, Not Lebanon, We are

ready to die for Iran,” chanted protesters.

Iran’s June presidential election, which was followed by huge opposition protests, plunged Iran into political turmoil and exposed deepening divisions within its ruling elites.

The opposition leaders say the poll was rigged to secure President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s re-election. The authorities deny it.

Writing by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Louise Ireland