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Iran’s Supreme Leader Orders Militias to Deal With Rioters

Iranian police on patrol inTehran, on Oct. 8.

Iranian police on patrol inTehran, on Oct. 8.

Source: AFP/Getty Images

Iran’s supreme leader on Saturday urged a unit of the country’s plainclothes militia to step up action against protesters, in remarks that could escalate a crackdown on months-long anti-regime unrest.

“Dealing with rioters is one of the most important tasks of the Basij,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a televised speech, referring to a civilian volunteer force known as being one of his most loyal support bases.