Iran: New protests after the death of a woman in prison

Iran: New protests after the death of a woman in prison

Fresh protests have taken place across Iran, including in Tehran and Mashhad, following the death of a young woman in morality police custody, with police again on Monday denying any responsibility for the death.

A demonstration took place in Sanandaj, the capital of the Kurdistan province in the north-west of the country, where the young woman is from, on Sunday evening and further protests took place in several universities in the capital on Monday, local media reported.

On Monday evening, on Hejab Street (“Muslim veil” in Persian) in central Tehran, “several hundred people shouted anti-authority slogans, some of whom had removed their hijab,” Fars Agency said.

A short video released by the agency shows a crowd of several dozen people, including women, who have removed their veils and are shouting “Death to the Islamic Republic.”

“Police arrested several people and dispersed the crowd with batons and tear gas,” Fars said.

A similar gathering was held in Mashhad, the country’s first holy city in the northeast, Tasnim agency reported.

On September 13, Masha Amini was arrested in Tehran for “wearing inappropriate clothing” by the Deputy Police, a unit tasked with enforcing the Islamic Republic of Iran’s strict dress code for women.

In Iran, covering your hair in public is compulsory. Among other things, this police prohibits women from wearing short coats above the knee, tight pants and jeans with holes, and brightly colored outfits.

The young woman fell into a coma after her arrest and died in hospital on September 16, according to state television and her family.

Activists called his death “suspicious,” but Tehran police said there was “no physical contact” between police and the victim.

The death of the young woman triggered a wave of anger in Iran. And Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has called for an investigation to be opened.

After an initial demonstration on Saturday in Saghez, Mahsa Amini’s hometown, around 500 people protested in Sanandaj, according to Fars.

– “Incident regrettable” –

“The demonstrators shouted hostile slogans against those responsible, smashed car windows and set garbage cans on fire,” the authority said. Police used “tear gas to disperse the crowd” and arrested “several people”.

“Many protesters are convinced that Mahsa died under torture,” Fars wrote.

In the Iranian capital, according to Tasnim, students have started protest movements at several universities, including those of Tehran and Shahid Beheshti.

They asked the authorities for “clarifications” about the Iranian’s death.

Tehran’s police chief, General Hossein Rahimi, again denied the “unfair allegations against the police”.

“There was no negligence on our part. We have conducted investigations (…) and all the evidence shows that there was no negligence or improper conduct on the part of the police,” he said.

“This is a regrettable incident and we never want to see such incidents happen again,” he added.

– “Decent clothes” –

General Rahimi reiterated that the young woman broke the dress code and that police asked Mahsa’s relatives to bring her “decent clothes.”

On the day of his death, state television broadcast a short surveillance video showing a woman identified as Mahsa Amini collapsing after speaking to a female officer at police compound.

On Monday, Amjad Amini, the victim’s father, told Fars the “video was cut” and claimed his daughter was “taken to the hospital too late.”

Iran’s Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi said on Saturday that “Mahsa appears to have had previous problems” and that she “underwent brain surgery when she was five years old.”

Denied information from the father, who assured that his daughter was “in the best of health”. The young woman was arrested while visiting her family in Tehran.

In recent months, the vice police have been criticized for violent interventions.

Many filmmakers, artists, athletes, politicians and religious figures have expressed their anger on social media after the young woman’s death.

Abroad, the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, on Monday condemned the “unacceptable” death of this young woman and called on the authorities to punish those responsible.

For its part, France described the arrest and death in custody of this young Iranian as “deeply shocking” and also called for a “transparent investigation to fully clarify the circumstances of this tragedy”, according to its foreign ministry. .


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