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Iran: Police Disperse Student Protest In Tehran

Tehran, 11 June 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Police early today broke up a demonstration at Tehran University by several thousand Iranians who oppose government plans to privatize some universities. News agencies say police used batons and rubber bullets to disperse crowds. Witnesses say police detained several demonstrators.

Some of the protesters called for the resignation of President Mohammad Khatami, who has had little progress in implementing reforms since he became president in 1997. Khatami and the reformist-dominated parliament have faced strong opposition by Islamic fundamentalists in powerful positions.

Iran saw its biggest proreform protests in three years last year after academic dissident Hashem Aghajari was sentenced to death for blasphemy. The verdict was later overturned.