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Iran top leader says enemies have stirred unrest in country

LONDON: Iran’s Supreme Leader on Tuesday accused enemies of the Islamic Republic of stirring unrest, as anti-government demonstrations that began last week continued.

In recent days, enemies of Iran used different tools including cash, weapons, politics and intelligence apparatus to create troubles for the Islamic Republic,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei was quoted as saying in a post on his official website.

Khamenei said he would address the nation about the recent events “when the time is right”.

Some 450 people have been arrested in the Iranian capital over the past three days during unrest linked to protests, an official told local media on Tuesday.

“200 people were arrested on Saturday, 150 on Sunday and around 100 on Monday,” Ali-Asghar Naserbakht, a deputy in the Tehran city governor’s office, told the reformist-linked ILNA news agency.

Protests have been relatively small in Tehran compared with many parts of the country since the unrest began last Thursday.

“We feel the situation in Tehran is more calm than previous days. Already yesterday, it was calmer than before,” said Naserbakht.

He added that no request had yet been put to the Revolutionary Guards to intervene in the capital.

“We will not permit insecurity to continue in any way in Tehran. If it continues, officials will take decisions to finish it,” said Esmail Kowsari, a deputy commander for a local branch of the Revolutionary Guards, on state television.

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