Unconfirmed reports from Iran claim troops and armoured cars have moved into central Tehran where anti-government protesters are planning a mass rally later. But it may be an indication that Iran’s leaders are ready to crack down after weeks of popular unrest. Yesterday, the government called out its own supporters to denounce the protesters.
Opposition leaders Mir Hossein Moussavi and Mehdi Karoubi are reported to have fled Tehran. Government loyalists want them executed.
“The masterminds of protest groups have been identified and some of them have been arrested,” said Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi. “We expect the judicial system to take strong and tough action against them.”
Sunday saw the bloodiest protests in Tehran since June’s disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Eight people were killed and at least 20 reformers were arrested, including three senior Moussavi advisers.