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US sanctions Iranian commander over Mahshahr killings


The U.S. State Department said on Saturday it had imposed sanctions on a general of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps who commanded units blamed for a massacre of protesters in November, Reuters reported.

The U.S. State Department has said previously it had received videos of the Revolutionary Guards opening fire without warning on protesters in Mahshahr county in southwest Iran.

On Saturday, it cited "multiple" media reports and information submitted by the Iranians through its Rewards for Justice tipline that units under Brigadier General Hassan Shahvarpour’s command killed as many as 148 people when they used armored vehicles to encircle fleeing protesters, firing machine guns into the crowd and setting fire to the marsh in which protesters took cover.

The State Department said it was designating Shahvarpour, a commander in Khuzestan province where Mahshahr is located, under a U.S. law banning officials of foreign governments and their immediate family members for whom there was "credible information on their involvement in gross violations of human rights."