TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Iran’s Police Commander Brigadier General Hossein Ashtari cautioned against the enemies’ malicious attempts to take advantage of the unrest in the country and said they are seeking to blame the government for the deaths in the riots.

In recent days Iran has witnessed rallies in some provinces, where the primary demands of the people are related to living conditions and economic problems, Brigadier General Ashtari said in remarks released on Wednesday.

“Some opportunists exploited this situation with the support of the sworn enemies of the country, headed by the US, and caused citizens’ discontent by destroying public property and making acts of aggression against the lives and property of the people,” he said.

He further underlined that people should be careful about foreign-backed scenarios suggesting that the government is behind the deaths in the recent incidents.

The Iranian official also made assurances that the police have tracked the foreign sources creating the scenarios.

Life has returned to normal in cities, including the capital, after a few days of unrest in Iran which drew condemnation from the majority of the people.

In demonstrations staged in various cities of the country on Monday evening, Iranians condemned recent attacks and acts of vandalism by some rioters during public protests over price hikes.

There are various conflicting reports about the number of casualties and the extent of the damage in the riots. According to some unverified reports, at least 21 people, including a number of the security forces, have been killed.

According to Article 27 of the Iranian Constitution, “public gatherings and marches are allowed so long as the participants do not carry arms and are not in violation of the fundamental principles of Islam.”

Some Western and Arab media outlets tried to portray the protests as a political uprising against the Establishment.

Iranian officials maintain that people have the right to stage protests to express their opinions, as long as rallies comply with the legal conditions.