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Iran makes arrests over detained blogger’s death

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Iran arrested a number of people in connection with the death of blogger Sattar Beheshti, who was in detention at the time he passed away.

Tehran's public prosecutor, Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi, confirmed the arrests and said authorities began investigating once Beheshti's death became known. Iran hopes to make the findings public next week, according to AFP.

Beheshti, 35, died on Nov. 3. Reports suggested that he was tortured to death after he criticized the country’s regime. He was arrested over “actions on social networks and Facebook” in late October.

Lawmaker Mohammad Dehqan, who sits on Iran’s judicial commission, Tuesday demanded the police explain its "treatment" of Beheshti.

While Iran’s judiciary says Beheshti was detained at Evin prison, others claim he was held at the Kahrizak detention center, which was temporarily closed in 2009 after three prisoners died at the hands of guards.

"We would not have witnessed [Beheshti's death], if guilty agents and judges involved in the Kahrizak incident had been dealt with," Dehqan said, according to AFP.

The U.S. State Department announced sanctions last week against five Iranian entities and four people over the treatment of bloggers and journalists. Among them are Communications Minister Reza Taghipour, Iranian national police head Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam, and software companies AmnAfzar Gostar-e Sharif and PeykAsa.

Americans are not allowed to do business with those entities and people, who are banned from traveling to the U.S. Their U.S. assets have also been frozen.

Photo of Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi via Lenziran Newsvideo/YouTube