More unrest in Iran; Death toll in building collapse reaches 31


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Iranian riot police clashed with angry protesters in the southwestern city of Abadan, according to online videos, and state media reported that the Death toll in a building collapse reached 31 on Monday.

The official IRNA news agency said two more bodies had been pulled from the rubble of an under-construction tower that collapsed a week ago. Rescuers continued to clear debris on Monday and search for other victims under the overturned part of the Metropol building. Of 37 injured, two remain hospitalized.

The deadly collapse has raised questions about the safety of similar buildings around the country and underscored an ongoing crisis in Iranian construction projects. The collapse reminded many of the 2017 fire and collapse of the iconic Plasco building in Tehran that killed 26 people.

It has also drawn angry protesters onto the streets of Abadan over the past week, leading to eruptions of unrest and clashes with riot police on several occasions.

The semi-official Fars news agency said mourners gathered at the site of the collapse on Sunday evening when a group of protesters attacked the state television camera crew, forcing the police to disperse people to restore order and security.

Tasnim, another semi-official news agency, reported that more bodies were found under the 10-story building.

Foreign Farsi-language television channels aired footage from Abadan showing youths clashing with police in the town and throwing rocks at them. As in recent days, it was not immediately clear if anyone was injured or if police made any arrests.