Gunfire, Clashes in Iran’s Restive Oil-Rich Southwest Kill One

An Iranian protester was killed during demonstrations against the government’s handling of water shortages and drought in oil-producing, southwestern Khuzestan province, the semi-official Iranian Students’ News Agency reported.

The 30-year-old man was struck by a bullet in Shadegan, near the border with Iraq, on July 16, ISNA reported, quoting Governor Omid Sabripoor, who blamed “rioters and opportunists” for the death.

Unverified video clips circulating on social media showed clashes between protesters and armed security forces. Several rounds of gunfire can be heard in at least one of the clips.

Demonstrations have been held over the past several days in various cities in Khuzestan, according to several semi-official news agencies.

The area, which is prone to droughts and poor air quality, has been suffering from acute water shortages for months during an unusually hot summer that has also triggered an electricity crisis across the country.

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