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Plot to Kill Iran’s Top Sunni Cleric Reportedly Uncovered

June 20, 2023
1 min read
As news of the foiled assassination attempt spread, Zahedan residents rushed toward the Makki Mosque and the authorities bolstered security around the city
As news of the foiled assassination attempt spread, Zahedan residents rushed toward the Makki Mosque and the authorities bolstered security around the city

A plot to assassinate outspoken Sunni cleric Molavi Abdulhamid has been foiled, the Haalvsh human rights organization reported on June 19.

Haalvsh, a group that monitors rights violations in the south-eastern province of Sistan and Baluchistan, said the security guards of Zahedan’s Makki Mosque arrested a man masquerading as a religious student who wanted to poison Molavi.

The man said the plot was orchestrated by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) intelligence service. 

As news of the foiled assassination attempt spread, Zahedan residents rushed toward the Makki Mosque and the authorities bolstered security around the city.

Government officials did not immediately comment on the alleged plot to kill Molavi, the Sunni Friday prayer leader of Zahedan, the capital of Sistan and Baluchistan.

The 75-year-old cleric has been a key dissenting voice inside Iran since the eruption of nationwide protests in September 2022, using his sermons to call for fundamental economic, social and political changes in the country. 

In response, the security agencies have increased pressure on Molavi, banning him from leaving the country for a planned Hajj pilgrimage to Islam’s holy places in Saudi Arabia.

Zahedan has been rocked by weekly protest rallies after Friday prayers since September 30, when security forces killed nearly 100 people in the deadliest incident in the nationwide demonstrations sparked by Mahsa Amini’s death in police custody in September.

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