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Istanbul shooting victim now thought to be Iranian dissident

Massoud Molavi, who published corruption allegations against authorities in Tehran, was gunned down earlier this month
Molavi, said to be in his mid-30s, was murdered on the street while walking with a friend in the Sisli district of Istanbul (AFP)

A man gunned down earlier this month in Istanbul was an Iranian who ran an opposition social media site, local media reported on Monday.

Massoud Molavi, said to be in his mid-30s, was murdered on the street while walking with a friend in the Sisli district of Istanbul on 14 November, according to the DHA news agency.

CCTV footage released by IHA agency appeared to show the moment of the killing. Bullet casings were found at the scene. 

Molavi helped run a channel on Telegram called "Black Box", which published corruption allegations against members of the Iranian government, judiciary and intelligence services, and claimed to have contacts within the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. 

Turkish police told DHA that investigations were ongoing, and that they had no information at present on Molavi's background. 

Iran's intelligence services are known to have a sizeable presence in neighbouring Turkey, where many exiled Iranians live, and many more come on vacation, AFP news agency said.

In April 2017, the owner of leading Persian-language satellite entertainment channel GEM TV was shot dead in his car by unknown individuals in Istanbul. 

Saeed Karimian was a British citizen of Iranian origin, and ran GEM TV from Dubai, offering Western programmes to Persian-speaking audiences, including US game shows and Turkish soaps.