| 12 April 2024, Friday |

Tehran governor accuses protesters of attacks, at least 22 arrested

The governor of Tehran has accused protesters of attacking police and destroying public property during demonstrations ignited by the death of a young woman while in the custody of Iran’s morality police.

Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old from Iran’s Kurdistan province, fell into a coma and died following her arrest in Tehran last week by the morality police for “unsuitable attire,” sparking nationwide anger and demonstrations in numerous areas, including the capital.

The protests spread on Monday, with the most intense in the Kurdish region. Kurdish human rights group Hengaw said three people were killed there on Monday when security forces opened fire, revising down a previous tally of five dead.

Reuters could not independently verify the report, and there was no official confirmation of the fatalities.

In the nationwide condemnations of Amini’s death, the Persian hashtag #MahsaAmini has reached over 3 million Twitter mentions.

In one large protest in Tehran, a crowd of demonstrators wearing black shouted “Oh the day when we will be armed”, according to a video posted by the 1500tasvir Twitter account, which publishes footage it says it receives from the public. The account has 70,000 followers.

The United States on Monday demanded accountability, saying Amini died “after injuries sustained while in police custody for wearing an ‘improper’ hijab”. France also condemned her arrest, “and the violence that caused her death”.

On Monday, the Tehran police commander described her death as an “unfortunate” incident, while rejecting what he said were “cowardly accusations” against the police.

  • Reuters