Statement No. 8
Extensive clashes in Khonj (southern Iran) and Marand (northwest Iran) during the elections

Numerous clashes were reported between the people and the security and intelligence forces in different parts of the country during the clerical regime's "Islamic councils'" elections which was widely boycotted by the Iranian people.

Mojahedin's Command Headquarters inside Iran reported that at 9:00 a.m., yesterday, an hour after the polls opened, more than 1,000 residents in the city of Khonj (southern Fars province) staged a protest against the regime's policies and sham elections.

Angry protesters attacked the local district office with stones, bricks and plywood, breaking the windows and doors and inflicting heavy damages to the building. They then marched toward the Revolutionary Guards Corps headquarters in the city and attacked the building with stones and bricks.

The State Security Force and the Revolutionary Guards charged at the crowd and opened fire on them. A number of people were killed or wounded and many were arrested during the clashes. The sound of gunfire could be heard in the city's different districts until late afternoon hours.

The Guards Corps has announced the names of nine residents as organizers of the demonstration and is trying to arrest them.

Fearing the spread of the clashes and disruption in the elections, the regime closed down a number of polling stations in the city and dispatched Guard Corps reinforcements to Khonj from nearby cities.

Reports from Marand (East Azerbaijan province) indicate that yesterday at 4:30 p.m., some 2,000 residents staged a protest in the city's main square. The Guards Corps and the State Security Force attacked the crowd.

Opening fire at the crowd and using water cannons, the suppressive forces tried to disperse the protesters. In the one-hour clash, in which the residents were chanting "death to Khamenei, death to Khatami," many people were wounded and scores arrested.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
February 27, 1999

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