A city in western Iran on Wednesday went on strike in solidarity with mourners 40 days after security forces killed dozens in a crackdown on protests in the conflict-torn southeast of the country, human rights officials said. the group said.
Security forces opened fire on protests that erupted on September 30 after weekly prayers in Zahedan, the capital of Sistan-Baltistan province on the Iran-Pakistan border.
It was two weeks after demonstrations erupted across Iran after 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian Murthy Amini was arrested in Tehran for ignoring strict hijab-wearing rules for women.
Since her death, at least 304 people have died, including 41 children and 24 women, according to the Oslo-based Iranian Human Rights Organization (IHR).
In a video shared on the 1500tasvir social media channel, activists were seen distributing leaflets calling for protests in all cities on Wednesday for Zahedan’s 40-day “Bloody Friday” memorial service.
Taraneh Alidosti, one of Iran’s most prominent actors, also posted a photo of himself on Instagram without a scarf and with the slogan “Women, Life, Freedom.”
Widespread strikes were carried out “in solidarity” with Zahedan in Kurdish cities such as Bane, Bukan, Kermanshah, Maliban, Sanandaj, and Amini’s hometown Sakez, according to the Norway-based Hengo rights group. Norway-based Hengo Rights Group said:
‘Angry and frustrated’
At least 92 people died in Zahedan on September 30, the IHR said, triggering the violence, which was triggered by the custodial rape of a 15-year-old girl by a police commander in the province’s port city of Chabahar.
But experts say the Baluchi tribe was inspired by protests over Amini’s death, initially for women’s rights, but expanded over time to include other grievances. It is said that it became possible to
“The 2022 protests are a rallying of angry and frustrated Iranians with the same goal of overthrowing the Islamic Republic and the theocratic regime,” said Saeed Golkar of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
The impoverished province of Sistan-Baluchistan has become a flashpoint for clashes with drug-smuggling gangs, Baluchi rebels and Sunni extremist groups.
Activists have long accused the region of being the victim of discrimination by Iran’s Shiite cleric leadership, with a disproportionate number of Baluchis killed and hanged for execution each year in clashes. .
Protests over Amini’s death show no signs of abating despite a campaign of brutal crackdowns and mass arrests.
Young women led the way, removing and burning head coverings, chanting anti-regime slogans, and confronting security forces in the streets.
Reformist parties called for “courageous and transformative change” on Wednesday, including a referendum to end the crisis, according to a statement from the Iran Reform Front, founded last year by officials close to former president Mohammad Khatami.
But Henry Rohm, an Iranian expert at the Washington Institute, suggested that “this call will almost certainly fade away.”
“The regime cannot come together through even modest reforms to quell the protests. In moments of turmoil, there is little hope that it will come to the ballot,” he said.
‘Systematically silence women’
Iran has struggled to quell the demonstrations that have turned into its biggest challenge since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Security forces fired directly at protesters using live ammunition, bird shots, tear gas and even paintballs.
Iran has sought to portray the protests as a conspiracy orchestrated by its greatest enemy in the West, while the UK, Canada, the European Union and the US have imposed sanctions for rights violations.
German Foreign Minister Annalena Beerbock said Wednesday that the EU aims to introduce further restrictions next week.
“We don’t give up,” said Bearbock. “We stand with Iranian men and women not only today, but for as long as we need to.”
This week, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps was accused of making death threats against two journalists working for the London-based Persian-language Iranian International TV channel.
Volant Media, owner of the Saudi-linked channel, said London police had warned them of a “certain threat to their lives”.
In response, Iran’s Information Minister Esmail Khatib warned that the UK would “pay a price” for what it called actions to destabilize the Islamic Republic.
Khatib also accused Iran’s regional rival Saudi Arabia of funding the media behind the wave of unrest, state news agency IRNA reported Wednesday.
An unprecedented number of female journalists have been detained, which Reporters Without Borders (RSF) said was “symbolically revealing the Iranian regime’s intention to systematically silence the voices of women.” rice field.