At least four people have died and 61 have been injured in the fire declared in Evin prison, in the north of Tehran, the capital of Iran, according to the balance published by the Media Center of the Iranian Judiciary.
According to this source, quoted by the semi-official Iranian news agency Tasnim, the four deceased were convicted of robbery. In the last few hours, reports of a possible riot by those imprisoned for participating in the recent protests have proliferated.
Most of the inmates who have received health care have suffered smoke inhalation poisoning.
Iranian Arabic-language public television Al Alam has confirmed that there was a riot inside the prison and clashes among the inmates themselves in the wings dedicated to “thugs” and robbery inmates that resulted in the burning of the linen warehouse.
Up to 70 prisoners have been rescued. Of the 61 treated up to 51 have already been discharged and the rest remain hospitalized.
According to the governor of Tehran province, Mohsen Mansuri, quoted by Tasnim, “firefighters and security forces have the Evin prison fire under control and the situation is calm.”
Mansuri has specified that the fire started in wings 7 and 8 on Saturday afternoon and pointed out that the violence was concentrated in an internment area of “thugs and gangsters.”
Videos of the spectacular fire have been spread on social networks while media such as Radio Farda, a US-funded Farsi-language station, reported that security forces have used tear gas to disperse the families of prisoners concentrated after learning of the fire.
According to Radio Farda the fire started in wing 7, where initially prisoners detained during the 2008 wave of protests were held. However, later it was mostly prisoners for financial crimes and then the “thugs”. Now there are also political prisoners in wings 7 and 8 of the prison and that is where a riot and then the fire would have originated, according to Radio Farda.