Former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was reportedly arrested in Shiraz city for inciting unrest, Al Arabiya reported on Sunday.
Ahmadinejad, who served as the president of Iran from 2005 to 2013, will be placed under house arrest if Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei grants permission to the authorities to do so, according to Al Arabiya. The news of his arrest has been reported by several news outlets.
On Dec 28, anti-government protesters had taken to the streets of Iran over economic issues. The protests quickly spiraled out of control and turned against the regime as a whole, leaving 21 dead.
The protests, which vented anger at high unemployment and official corruption, were the largest seen in Iran since the disputed 2009 presidential election, and some demonstrators called for the overthrow of the government. Hundreds of people were detained during the protests.
According to Al Arabiya, the former Iranian president has been arrested for inciting the unrest and more demonstrations that began late December.
Al-Quds Al-Arabi newspaper reported that during a visit to Bushehr city late last month, Ahmadinejad had said that Iran suffered from “mismanagement” and that current President Hassan Rouhani and his government “believe that they own the land and that the people are an ignorant society".
“Some of the current leaders live detached from the problems and concerns of the people, and do not know anything about the reality of society," Ahmadinejad had reportedly said.
On Sunday, Iran's Revolutionary Guard, a powerful paramilitary force loyal to Khamenei, had claimed victory against the protesters.