Protests 'dangerous conspiracy' - Iran's Khamenei

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called an outbreak of deadly violence over the past two weeks a 'dangerous conspiracy' on Wednesday (November 27).

While the interior minister said about 730 banks and 140 government sites were torched in the worst anti-government unrest in a decade.

He also said up to 200,000 people have taken part nationwide.

Protests began on November 15 in response to gas price hikes, but soon escalated, with calls for Iran's leaders to step down.

Tehran blames 'thugs' linked to Washington, Israel and Saudi Arabia for stirring up violence.

It has cracked down harshly on the protests -- Amnesty International said this week it knew of at least 143 protesters killed, which Iran denies.

Ordinary Iranians are struggling to make ends meet, and it has got harder since U.S. President Donald Trump reimposed sanctions last year and later cut off nearly all Iran's oil exports.

That was after he pulled out of Iran's nuclear deal with other world powers.