Man ‘slaps’ Iranian minister at university event

Image copyright AFP Image caption The attack reportedly took place during an event in Tehran’s Polytechnic University A man has allegedly slapped a prominent Iranian governor during a speech at a university campus in…

Man 'slaps' Iranian minister at university event

Image copyright AFP Image caption The attack reportedly took place during an event in Tehran’s Polytechnic University

A man has allegedly slapped a prominent Iranian governor during a speech at a university campus in Tehran.

Some 20 people were reported to have been involved in the incident on Wednesday afternoon, according to reports.

The man, who was identified as a student from the same university, has been identified as Mohammad Reza Nasralla.

The governor, Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, told Iran’s state news agency IRNA that he and the man had been joking at the time.

Mr Falahatpisheh was addressing a seminar at Tehran Polytechnic University at the time.

Image copyright AFP Image caption Some 20 people were thought to have been involved in the incident, according to reports

“This is pure drama,” he was quoted as saying by the English-language Press TV.

“I never got under the girl’s skirt. I have never touched her. But I certainly did not touch my wife. I can only apologise to the girls.”

Mr Falahatpisheh, who is governor of Tehran province, was charged with abuse of power and abuse of a public position, according to the Iranian state news agency IRNA.

Image copyright AFP Image caption At least six people have been detained following the incident in Tehran

An eyewitness, Masoud Topalki, told the BBC that the man had been shouting at Mr Falahatpisheh, as the governor tried to make a speech, after a student took his hijab, a traditional woman’s headscarf.

He added that other people inside the room had tried to stop the man but the crowd then got restless and decided to leave.

Images of the man’s apparent attack have been circulated online on social media, allegedly showing him slapped in the face.

They come amid mounting criticism of security forces in Iran following the second storming of Tehran’s British embassy in 12 years earlier this week.

The police have launched a probe into the ransacking, but most of the hundreds of staff are still in hiding because of threats against their families.

Iran and Britain have had no diplomatic relations since the 1979 Iranian revolution.

There have been suggestions that the US withdrawal from Iran’s nuclear deal last week, and Iran’s missile programme, have exacerbated the row.

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