TEHRAN — Iranian protesters ransacked and set fire to the Saudi Embassy in Tehran on Saturday after Saudi Arabia executed an outspoken Shiite cleric who had criticized the kingdom’s treatment of its Shiite minority.
A crowd of angry protesters hurled petrol bombs and stormed the Saudi Arabian embassy in Tehran early on Sunday morning (local time) before being cleared out by police.
The cleric, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, was among 47 men executed in Saudi Arabia on terrorism-related charges, drawing condemnation from Iran and its allies in the region, and sparking fears that sectarian tensions could rise across the Middle East.
Pictures and video on social media showed parts of the building’s interior on fire and smashed furniture inside one office.
The Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) said the embassy caught fire and the interior was destroyed.
“The police are everywhere and have dispersed the demonstrators, some of whom have been arrested,” ISNA said
Journalist Sobhan Hassanvand, from the local Shargh newspaper, filmed protesters throwing what appeared to be Molotov cocktails and trashing the embassy.
Another witness who lives locally said he saw members of the Basij militia position themselves in front of the embassy building.
“They were throwing Molotov cocktails at the Saudi embassy,” the witness said.
“It began with 15 or 20 people but I saw others joining them from nearby streets.”
Iran’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement calling for calm and urging protesters to respect the diplomatic premises, the Entekhab news website reported.
176 trafficked Nepalis rescued from Indo-Myanmar border
KATHMANDU — At least 176 Nepali men and women, who were being trafficked into Myanmar, have been rescued by Manipur police and activists from different parts of Manipur, a northeastern state of India, in the last two days.
On their second day of rescue operation, the Tengnoupal police have rescued atleast 20 Nepalis including 5 women and 15 men, from a Hotel in Moreh town,Imphal Free Press, an English-language daily published from Manipur has reported.
The Moreh police have rescued as many as 60 nationals of Nepal including 45 women and 15 men.
Earlier, over 105 Nepali women were rescued from Moreh and Imphal, the report stated.
The police team have also arrested the main suspect in the trafficking case identified as Madan Kumar Kharel, 52, Hailing from 07 Prithvinagar, Jhapa, Nepal.
The accused is reportedly responsible for bringing 20 of the 40 Nepali girls who were rescued from Moreh on Friday.
Meanwhile, Police also rescued 51 Nepalis from Imphal including 38 women and 13 men during Saturday rescue operations.