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Instagram Account For Iranian General Briefly Inaccessible

An Instagram account associated with a powerful Iranian general who leads an elite unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps was briefly inaccessible on May 25.

The account features images of General Qassem Soleimani, who heads the elite Quds Force that focuses on foreign operations. The account was later restored.

It's unclear whether the account, followed by some 300,000 users, is managed on Soleimani's behalf.

But Iran's semiofficial Fars news agency said the account belonged to him.

Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The incident happened less than two weeks after Iranian police on May 16 announced the arrest of eight people in an operation targeting Instagram and social-media users.

Those arrests involved photographers as well as women in Iran who posed for photographs with their hair uncovered.

Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, and IRNA