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Asharq Al-Awsat
Asharq Al-Awsat
London - Tehran - Asharq Al-Awsat

Iran Authorities Step up Crackdown on Protesters, UN Rapporteur Calls for Independent Probe

Part of the night protests in Tehran (Twitter)

Iranian security forces have attacked demonstrators, killing and wounding people in Tehran and several other cities.

The brutal crackdown on protests came as protesters continued to rally for the 41st day against the backdrop of popular rage over the death of Mahsa Amini while in police custody.

Javaid Rehman, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in Iran, reiterated calls for an independent investigation to hold those responsible for the violence being carried out by the government accountable.

A huge number of people gathered in the city of Khorramabad, the hometown of Nika Shakarami, a teenage protester who died in September.

Security forces attacked the people attending a ceremony held in Veysian, west of Khorramabad, to mark the 40th day after the death of Shakarami.

According to video footage shared on social media, security forces used live bullets and tear gas to disperse the crowds gathered to partake in the memorial.

Tensions continued into Thursday, with anger over the killing of at least one protester leading to attacks on official buildings.

In Mahabad, the death of Ismail Mouloudi led to chaotic scenes as protesters tried to storm government offices. They also tried to set fire to the governor’s office.

“A young Kurdish man was killed by direct fire from Iranian security forces,” Hengaw, a Norway-based group, said on Twitter. “This young man was shot in the forehead.”

Hengaw said government forces had opened fire on people in the Gomrok neighborhood of Mahabad.

Despite Hengaw confirming one death, state television later announced that three individuals were killed during clashes in Mahabad.

“We should not mourn for our youth, we should avenge them,” the protesters chanted, according to the rights group.

Protests have gripped Iran since Amini, a 22-year-old of Kurdish origin, died on September 16, three days after her arrest in Tehran by the morality police for allegedly breaching Iran’s dress code for women.

The rallies have been led by young women who have burned their headscarves and confronted security forces, in the biggest wave of unrest to rock Iran for years.

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