The Iranian regime is bracing itself for fresh nationwide protests following widespread calls for commemoration ceremonies for protesters killed during the last round of protests in November.
According to the state-run ILNA News Agency, home internet networks in some regions in Shiraz have been disconnected. The report said that most ISPs in the southwestern province of Fars were having network issues while some were completely cut off since this morning.
Cellphone networks in the province were also having issues with people saying that they had difficulty opening WhatsApp and Instagram on their phones.
ILNA also quoted a source in the Communications and Information Technology Ministry as saying that cellphone international networks and not internal networks were cut on orders of security officials.
The source said that the provinces of Alborz near Tehran, the western province of Kurdistan, the northwestern province of Zanjan and the southwestern province of Shiraz were partially cut off adding that more provinces would probably be affected.
ILNA has since taken down its report.
Social media reports say that around 15 cities including in Tehran and the southwestern province of Khuzestan were affected and that people were having difficulties connecting to the internet.
There are also reports that a large number of security forces and riot police have been dispatched to several cities. Videos circulated on social media platforms showed large police convoys in the northwestern city of Tabriz. Other videos showed heavy police presence in Qazvin, northwestern Iran, the western city of Sanandaj, and the capital Tehran.
Reports also indicate that the regime has set up Bassij security checkpoints in Shiraz.
The regime has also arrested a number of citizens including the parents and relatives of slain protester Pouya Bakhtiari and the brother of Ameneh Shahbazi who was shot and killed by security forces in Karaj. The 36 year old women was a mother of three children and was shot on November 17.
The regime’s security measures come after widespread calls for nationwide protests for December 26 which marks the 40th day of the death of a large number of protesters shot and killed during protests in November.
Social media platforms including Twitter, Telegram and Instagram are awash with Iranians vowing to bring down the regime in imminent protests. Videos have also been circulating showing Iranians how to defend themselves, break security cameras and defeat riot police.
During the last bout of protests in more than 180 cities, the regime indiscriminately shot and killed at least 1,500 people while imposing a one week internet blackout.