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Iranian security forces open fire as protests sweep through country

 At least 208 people have been killed in Iran, as security forces have cracked down on protests that have swept across the country.

Iranian state television admitted that deaths had occurred during the unrest, but claimed those killed were "armed thugs and rioters” or security personnel. Video footage of the protests, however, show uniformed members of Iran’s security forces, firing at unarmed protestors.

The New York Times dubbed the events Iran’s “deadliest political unrest since the Islamic revolution 40 years ago”.

Amnesty International has said at least 208 people have been killed so far, but other organisations speculate that the death toll may be as many as 400 people. At least 2,000 are wounded and 7,000 detained, according to international rights organizations, opposition groups and local journalists.

The protests, which have reportedly taken place in over 100 locations, began after a surge in gasoline prices, as Iran’s economy continues to struggle amidst US sanctions. 

See more from Al Jazeera here, the New York Times here and the BBC here.