Demonstrations in Iran protesting disputed elections flared up again Thursday night and police violence again abounds. Many of those protesting against the government paid with their lives.
An eyewitness in Tehran recounted that two people were killed right before his eyes, as reported by ABC reporter Lara Setrakian. The witness, who reported the events in an email to ABC, described how he was able to stay under the radar of the security forces, saying he stayed alive only by a miracle.
The witness, who asked not to be identified, said he was among the protestors near Keshavarz Boulevard in Tehran. He said that once gunshots rang out in the area, the protestors sought refuge in nearby houses, noting that many had opened their doors to the fleeing protestors.
"As soon as we came out of the houses they continued to use the tear gas and batons," he described. "We ran, but it was no use. A young girl and young man were killed in front of us."
"We were in the red zone and it was nothing less than war. Pray for us," wrote the eye witness.
The eye witness described the violent images and the fear and suffering incurred by the Iranian police. "One person had his arm shattered in different places, another had a broken skull."
"Know that it was the disciplinary forces that fired the bullets and were attacking people with the batons and tear gas. The plainclothes officers did not have batons, they had planks of wood to beat us to death. The Ansar (special forces) were also there, they took a young guy right in front of us. The police were attacking people; once they targeted someone they would catch them and hit them to death," he continued.
The eye witness also described how the security forces surprised the protestors: "We were encircled from three sides -- East, West, and the Northern streets and alleyways. Suddenly an empty bus appeared and drove straight into the demonstration. Inside the bus was filled with plainclothes officers who were hiding and wanted to attack from the center of the crowd. We ran away toward the southern alleyways, one out of five houses open their doors for us."
According to the anonymous witness, he and his friends ducked into one of the nearby houses for cover.
The nearby residents provided first aid, water, and other assistance to the protestors in order to help them overcome the damage caused by the tear gas shot at them.
He described how he and his friends evaded being caught by Iranian security officials: "After a lot of running away and chasing, we tried to get out of being encircled by police. The only option seemed like suicide -- we had to cross them, passing through hundreds of officers. They did not think that any protesters would come toward them, so they didn't think we were part of the demonstration."
The demonstrations in the Keshavarz area were not the only violent incidents Thursday in Tehran. According to reports, plainclothes security officers attacked students in the dorms of Amir-Kabir University in the city. It is unclear how many people were injured and to what extent in the violent outbreaks, but it is estimated that there were casualties. Security forces reportedly beat students and dormitory guards and damaged classrooms, showers, and even a prayer hall.