TEHRAN (AFP) — One person was killed and two wounded when armed men opened fire on a bus in southern Iran, the official IRNA news agency said on Tuesday, the latest incident of violence rocking the region.
“Armed rebels killed a passenger and wounded two others when they fired on a bus travelling from Zahedan to Bam,” Ahmad Reza Radan, deputy police chief of Zahedan, said.
Zahedan is the capital of the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan and has been the site of deadly violence in the last few days ahead of the June 12 presidential poll.
Radan said police were searching for the attackers.
The latest incident comes as dozens of people were arrested in the region over deadly sectarian unrest in Zahedan which erupted since last week.
Ten people died in the violence that flared after the bombing of a Shiite mosque on Thursday that left 25 dead, the owner of a local newspaper in Zahedan told AFP earlier on Tuesday.
Iran has been shaken by a spate of violent incidents in the run-up to the June 12 presidential election, in which incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad faces challenge from three rival candidates.
Thursday’s mosque bombing in the city was claimed by a shadowy Iranian Sunni insurgent group called Jundallah (Soldiers of God), according to a US group that monitors Islamist websites.
SITE Intelligence Group quoted a Jundallah statement as saying the attack was to avenge the hanging last year of members of the Baluch minority that adheres to Sunni Islam and makes up a significant part of the Sistan-Baluchestan population.