DUBAI - State-organised demonstrations to counter nationwide anti-government protests triggered by the death of a woman in police custody kicked off in several Iranian cities on Friday with marchers calling for the execution of rioters.
Demonstrators condemned the anti-government protesters as Israel's soldiers live state television coverage showed. They also shouted Death to America and Death to Israel, common slogans used by the country's clerical rulers to try and stir up support for authorities.
The crowds chanted, the offenders of the Quran must be executed.
Iran has staged mass demonstrations over the case of Mahsa Amini, 22, who died last week after being arrested by the morality police for wearing unsuitable clothes. Amini's death has reignited anger over issues including restrictions on personal freedoms in Iran, strict dress codes for women and an economy reeling from sanctions.
Iran's army sent the toughest warning yet from the authorities to protesters raged by the death, saying they would confront the enemies to ensure security.
The army said these desperate actions are part of the evil strategy of the enemy to weaken the Islamic regime.