Tehran iStock

Iran claimed on Tuesday that its security forces had arrested a network of agents working for Israel and had seized a cache of weapons it said were planned for use during recent unrest sparked by water shortages, Reuters reported.

Tuesday’s announcement came after nearly two weeks of protests over water shortages, mostly in southwest Iran, which have turned political and spread to other areas.

“Mossad operatives intended to use the equipment in urban riots and assassinations,” an Intelligence Ministry official said, according to Reuters, without providing any details.

The seized weapons included pistols, grenades, assault rifles and ammunition, the unnamed official said, adding, “Some of these are used to provoke clashes during protests.”

There was no immediate comment from Israeli officials.

Iran has also blamed past violence that broke out during protests on "thugs" backed by the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

The Islamic Republic regularly claims to have captured spies from the US and Israel and has in the past executed these individuals.

In June of 2012, Iran claimed to have dismantled a terrorist and sabotage network in the southern city of Shiraz, which allegedly planned bombings and assassination attempts during Iran’s presidential election.

The network had links with the CIA, Israel and some neighboring Arab nations, Iran claimed.

In a previous incident, Iran executed Majid Jamali Fashi after convicting him of spying for the Mossad and of playing a key role in the January 2010 assassination of a top nuclear scientist in return for payment of $120,000.