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Iran arrests 50 in connection with rial crash

October 24, 2012 17:21

Tehran accuses arrested of conspiring with Iran's enemies to instigate economic instability and disrupt the currency market.

Iran currency exchange

Iran sanctions 370. (photo credit:REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi)

Iran’s intelligence minister announced on Wednesday that around 50 people have been arrested on charges of disrupting the national currency market.

Hojjatol-Islam Heidar Moslehi said that those arrested had conspired with Iran’s enemies to instigate economic instability, disrupt the currency markets and incite fitna, or sedition.

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Speaking after a cabinet meeting, Moslehi said that Iran’s intelligence officials had achieved “very good results in detecting the roles [played by] foreigners and foreign television networks” in the economic chaos, according to a report in Fars News, which is affiliated with Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Moslehi warned that the ministry was constantly monitoring the movements of “those who conspire and cooperate with foreigners” to incite “sedition against the goals of the revolution.”

The Iranian intelligence minister added that Iranians should be on the look out for foreigners whose goals are to disrupt the currency market.

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Iran’s national currency, the rial, has plummeted to an all-time low this month, losing almost 40% of its value against the US dollar. Some in Iran’s government have blamed the country’s economic woes and the currency crash on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s economic mismanagement as well as on Western sanctions. However, Iran’s intelligence ministry has also blamed foreign plots for the fluctuating currency market.

Recently, the ministry established a new website where it has invited members of the public to report “suspicious activity” around the country. The ministry has also used the site to publish claims that the US has planned to destabilize Iran including by provoking economic unrest.
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