Cleric of Shi’ite mosque in Iran’s Zahedan was shot dead – IRNA

A general view of a street in Tehran following the tightening of restrictions to curb the surge of COVID-19 cases, Iran April 10, 2021. Majid Asgaripour/WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — The cleric of a Shi’ite mosque in the mostly Sunni-populated Iranian city of Zahedan has been shot dead, said the official news agency IRNA.

“A special task force has been formed for the purpose of identifying and arresting the perpetrators,” said the police commander of Sistan-Baluchistan province, Ahmad Taheri.

IRNA named the dead cleric as Sajjad Shahraki.

Authorities in Zahedan sacked the police chief and the head of a police station after that incident.

Zahedan, close to Iran’s southeastern border with Pakistan and Afghanistan, is home to a Baluch minority estimated to number up to 2 million people which has faced discrimination and repression for decades, according to human rights groups.

The Sistan-Baluchistan region around Zahedan is one of the country’s poorest and has been a hotbed of tension where Iranian security forces have been attacked by Baluch militants.

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