IranWire Exclusive: An Interior Ministry source has confirmed that, as of noon of Monday, November 25, 218 people have been killed during recent protests, 87 of them in Tehran province. The figures, which are based on reports sent to the ministry by provincial and city governors, is expected to rise as the ministry receives new reports.
As of last Tuesday, November 19, the Interior Ministry had received reports that 4,523 people had been arrested. That figure has not been updated and the ministry has received no further information.
According to the source, Brigadier General Gholam Hossein Gheybparvar, the acting commander of the Revolutionary Guards’ Central Imam Ali Security Garrison, had been given permission to order forces to “fire at will,” and so has been directly responsible for the massacre of protesters across Iran.
The Central Imam Ali Security Garrison commands Imam Ali Battalions, which were established following the disputed 2009 presidential election, across Iran. The battalions, then and now, are tasked with confronting and suppressing popular protests in an organized and comprehensive way. The battalions form part of the paramilitary Basij Organization, which functions under the umbrella of the Revolutionary Guards. According to Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari, the former commander-in-chief of the Revolutionary Guards, approximately 31,000 Basijis have been trained as members of the battalions [Persian link].