Wed. Sep 28th, 2022

Tehran, September 22 (EFE).- At least 17 people have died in six days of protests that have rocked Iran over the death of Mahsa Amin after she was arrested for allegedly wearing a veil incorrectly, Iranian state television announced Thursday.

“17 people, including policemen, have died in recent days’ incidents,” IRIB television said, adding that this was its count and not official data.

So far, authorities have confirmed the death of eight people, including three members of the security forces.

Protests erupted on Friday and spread across the country following news of Mahsa Amini’s death after she was arrested by Moral police for wearing the wrong burqa.

Demonstrators protest the death of Mahsa Amini.  EFE/EPA/STR
Demonstrators protest the death of Mahsa Amini. EFE/EPA/STR

Demonstrators have shown their anger in at least 20 cities across the country, where protests have turned violent, chanting “justice, freedom and no compulsory hijab”, “women, life, freedom” or “death to the dictator”. It has intensified with security forces resorting to riot gear.

Protesters torched at least two police stations and several vehicles in clashes last night.

Videos shared on Twitter by activists and journalists last night showed protests in numerous cities across the country, but their authenticity has not been verified.

In the northwestern city of Rasht, an elderly woman chanted “death to the dictator” as she marched without a veil in one of the videos.

Other videos show women burning their veils, images that have become symbols of protest.

Internet is off

In an apparent attempt to control the protests, the government last night almost completely blocked mobile internet and limited apps such as WhatsApp and Instagram.

The communication situation improved in the morning but the disaster started again on Thursday afternoon.

Social networks, especially Twitter, are playing an important role, with protesters posting hundreds of videos on them.

Faced with the situation, Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guards on Thursday described the protests as “treason” and asked the judiciary to prosecute those who “spread rumors and lies” on social media and in the streets.

A petition joined by the ultra-conservative newspaper “Kayhan,” whose director was chosen by Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, criticized the judiciary for not publicly condemning anyone for the protests.

“Show no mercy to these criminals,” the paper asked.

Amini arrested

Amini was arrested by police in Tehran’s so-called Morale on Tuesday last week, where she was visiting, and taken to a police station to attend “an hour of re-education” for wearing the wrong veil.

He died three days later in a hospital where he had slipped into a coma after suffering a heart attack, which authorities attributed to health problems, denied by the family.

His death has managed to rouse thousands of Iranians through pain and compassion, unlike other occasions when protests have been reduced to fragmented social groups fueled by the economy.

Authorities insist that the protests have been instigated by “foreign enemies” with interference from other countries’ embassies and intelligence services.

Iran’s president, Ibrahim Raisi, will return to Tehran tomorrow from New York, where he gave a speech before the United Nations General Assembly, on the day authorities plan marches in support of the regime.

By admin

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