Ghasem Fathollahi, a member of the Revolutionary Guards who was killed outside his home in Tehran on Tuesday, was assassinated by the IRGC Intelligence Organization, Iran International reported on Thursday.

Fathollahi, a commander of Basij militia unit in one of the neighborhoods of the capital Tehran, was killed after being shot four times by a gunman who fled the scene on a motorcycle. He succumbed to his injuries at a hospital near his place of residence.

He was the commander of the basij base of a mosque in Khani Abad in Tehran, District 12 downtown Tehran.

Initial reports suggested that he was killed by people opposed to the clerical regime, but sources close to the IRGC later claimed that he was killed during a robbery.

On Thursday, sources told Iran International, a news website associated with the Iranian opposition, that Fathollahi was shot dead by IRGC intelligence agents due to his leniency towards protesters.

The sources said that the Intelligence Organization of the IRGC had become suspicious of Fatollahi in the past few weeks and had been monitoring him. They added that he refused to confront the demonstrators and suppress them during the protests in the area.

Investigating his conduct, IRGC’s intelligence found out that he was not alone and was in contact with a group of the disgruntled members of security forces who tried to refrain from using deadly violence against protesters, including opening fire at them.

According to Iran International's sources, the Revolutionary Guard Intelligence Organization is worried about the growing number of security forces who refuse to confront the protesters and has taken measures to deal with this trend.

The report also said that Fahollahi was apparently using a PlayStation device to keep in touch with a network of protesters. The assailant or someone who reportedly accompanied him took this PlayStation device too.

It is not yet clear whether Fathollahi’s killing was a pre-meditated, deliberate full-fledged hit operation or only a collateral incident during the attempt to seize the PlayStation and arrest him, the report said.

Protests have gripped Iran following the September 16 death of 22-year-old Amini after she was arrested by the morality police.

Hundreds of protesters have been killed in more than two months of nationwide unrest, including dozens of minors.

Two men aged 23 have already been executed over the protests, and campaigners fear dozens more risk being hanged as Iran uses capital punishment as an intimidation tactic in a bid to quell the protests.

Last week, Iranian writer and painter Mehdi Bahman was reportedly sentenced to death after taking part in the anti-government protests and giving an interview to Israel’s Channel 12 News.

This week, two Iranian teenagers were sentenced to be hanged over involvement in the protests.