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May 11, 2015 4:39 pm

‘#Iran_Aflame’ Trends as Kurdish Protesters Confront Iranian Police

avatar by David Daoud

The hashtag "#Iran_Aflame" has gained increased popularity on Twitter after riots broke out in response to the suicide of an Iranian Kurdish woman, and reports indicate that members of the Iranian security forces have been killed by oppositionists. PHOTO: Channel 2/ Times of Israel.

As Iranian Kurds rioted in the northwestern city of Mahabad in response to the mysterious death of a Kurdish woman, the Twitter hash-tag “#إيران_تشتعل” or “#Iran_Aflame” has been popularly adopted to disseminate the ongoing story.

The hashtag – which reached 230,000 tweets since Saturday – was used to circulate pictures and video clips of the ongoing tensions within Iran, specifically in Mahabad in Iran’s West Azerbaijan Province.

Riots there arose after Farinaz Khosrwni, a 23-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman, committed suicide by throwing herself from the fourth story of the hotel where she worked. Activists claimed Khosrwni took her own life to prevent herself from being raped by an Iranian officer.

Chief of Iranian Police Gen. Hussein Ashtari said a number of police officers and security forces had been killed by those he described as “evil armed gangs which oppose the regime,” according to Al Jazeera.

While he did not mention the area in which the fatal clashes occurred or the number of those killed, security forces have reportedly fired live bullets at protesters and blocked roads in the area.

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