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Greece: Molotov cocktail used to attack Iranian embassy in Athens

Attack follows gathering in city's Syntagma Square to denounce Tehran's crackdown on Mahsa Amini protests
Two people riding a motorcycle with their faces covered hurled the weapon against the wall of the Iranian embassy, where it exploded (Facebook)

A Molotov cocktail bomb was thrown at the Iranian embassy in Athens on Sunday, Athens News Agency reported. 

According to Greek police, at around 1am (10pm GMT) two people riding a motorcycle with their faces covered hurled the weapon against the wall of the embassy where it exploded. No damage was caused. 

On Saturday afternoon, around 200 people had gathered at Syntagma Square in central Athens to denounce Iran's crackdown on protests following the death of Mahsa Amini.

Amini died in police custody after Iran's morality police arrested the 22-year-old Kurdish woman in Tehran on 13 September for wearing her hijab in an "improper" way.

Her death led to demonstrations in Iran and across the world in support, with women taking off their headscarves in solidarity with her.

Iran's state television says 41 people have been killed, in what have turned into the country's biggest wave of protests in years.

Authorities have restricted internet and mobile services to prevent footage of the protests and the response by security forces from getting out, activists say.

Iran summoned the British and Norwegian ambassadors over what it said was interference and hostile media coverage of the nationwide unrest triggered by Amini's death, the semi-official Isna news agency said on Sunday.

Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian was also quoted on Sunday as saying US support for "rioters" was contrary to Washington's diplomatic stance towards Iran.   

"Peaceful protest is the right of every nation," said Amirabdollahian, according to Isna.

"However, the US involvement in Iran's affairs and support to 'rioters' in implementing their destabilisation project is in clear conflict with Washington's diplomatic messages to Iran regarding the necessity of a nuclear deal and establishing stability in the region."

'Hostile character'

President Ebrahim Raisi has said Iran ensured freedom of expression and that he had ordered an investigation into the death in detention of Amini.

He also said that "acts of chaos" were unacceptable and that Iran must deal decisively with the unrest. 

Mahsa Amini: Raisi says Iran must 'decisively confront' protesters as death toll doubles
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At the United Nations, he said extensive coverage of Amini's case was "double standards", pointing to deaths in US police custody.

Iran's foreign ministry summoned Britain's ambassador on Saturday in response to the "hostile character" of London-based Persian language media, Isna said.

The Norwegian envoy was also summoned to explain the "interventionist stance" of the country's parliament speaker, who has expressed support for the protesters on Twitter.

Amini's death has reignited anger in Iran over issues that include restrictions on personal freedoms, the strict dress codes for women, and an economy reeling from sanctions.

Women have played a prominent role in the protests, waving and burning their headscarves. Some have publicly cut their hair as furious crowds called for the downfall of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The protests are the largest to sweep the country since demonstrations over fuel prices in 2019, when Reuters reported 1,500 people were killed in a crackdown on protesters, the bloodiest bout of internal unrest in the Islamic Republic's history.

'Completely militarised'

Official news agency Irna said on Sunday a member of the Basij, a militia under the umbrella of the Revolutionary Guards, died from injuries suffered in a clash with what it called rioters in Orumieh in northwest Iran, where many of Iran's 10 million Kurds live.

It said his death occurred at a "critical juncture in the 43-year history of the Islamic revolution", referring to Iran's four decades of clerical rule since the overthrow of the Shah.

State media said 12 bank branches were destroyed in the unrest in recent days, and 219 ATMs have been damaged.

The Iranian human rights group Hengaw described the city of Oshnavieh, also in the country's northwest, as "completely militarised". 

It said the city was on strike, authorities were making arrests and at least five bodies were in the hospital morgue. Middle East Eye could not verify the report.

Late on Saturday, the activist Twitter account 1500tasvir carried videos of protests in Tehran's western district of Sattarkhan showing protesters gathered at a square chanting "don't be afraid we're all in this together", with a motorcycle apparently belonging to riot police burning in the background.

A video posted on social media on Saturday showed a demonstration in the northern city of Babol with youths trying to take off portraits of Khamenei and Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic, at a university gate while bystanders shouted "death to the dictator".

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