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Iran claims to foil mass assassination of IRGC figures, Sunni clerics

Iran has been working hard to portray its intelligence apparatus as a formidable force that is busting one terror network after another, pointing to Israel as the mastermind.

TEHRAN — Iranian operatives have neutralized a chain of imminent assassination plots, the country's Intelligence Minister Esmail Khatib declared in a televised speech on Thursday. 

"The planned attacks were meant to target Sunni clerics, judges and officers within the ranks of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps," the minister said. 

The attacks were allegedly set to be carried out simultaneously on Sept. 30. The day falls on the first anniversary of "Bloody Friday," when IRGC forces gunned down some 100 protesters last year in the southeastern city of Zahedan, where the Sunni population had joined the nationwide unrest triggered by the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody.

Ever since the city has been rocked by weekly demonstrations demanding justice for those slain. Ahead of the anniversary, clashes renewed on Friday as activists say IRGC forces took sniper positions and fired pellet guns at protesters, injuring at least 23 people including four children.  

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