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Protests in Iran: more than 75 dead in 10 days according to an NGO

More than 75 people have died in Iran in the crackdown on protests sparked 11 days ago over the death of a woman in police custody, according to an NGO, and Western countries are calling on Tehran to stop using force. The Iranian authorities, for their part, anticipate 41 deaths, including members of the security forces. They also announced the arrest of more than 1,200 protesters. Activists, lawyers and journalists were also arrested according to the NGOs. The protests, which resumed on Monday night, erupted on September 16 after the death in hospital of the 22-year-old Iranian woman Mahsa Amini, arrested three days earlier in Tehran for violating a strict dress code for women in the Republic. . According to the Oslo-based NGO Iran Human Rights (IHR), “at least 76 people were killed in the demonstrations”, including “six women and four children”, in 14 provinces of the country. The IHR claimed to have obtained “videos and death certificates confirming that live ammunition was fired at protesters”. Since Mahsa Amini’s death, Iranians have demonstrated every night in Tehran and in other parts of the country. – Photos of the guide torn up – Many policemen with helmets and armed with sticks took up positions to try to prevent the concentrations. Some demonstrators throw anti-government slogans interspersed with “Woman, Life and Freedom” from the roofs of buildings, says Ali, a resident of the capital. On Monday night, the protests were marked by the same “Death to the dictator” slogans in the capital and in other cities, according to witnesses. In Sanandaj, capital of the province of Kurdistan (northwest), where Mahsa Amini is originally from, women climbed on the roofs of cars and removed their veils, according to images published by IHR. No police force was visible in the footage. In Tabriz (northwest), policemen firing tear gas at protesters appear in a video released by the IHR, where shots can also be heard. Recent videos of the protests published by AFP showed riot police beating protesters with batons and students tearing up large photographs of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and his predecessor, the Islamic Republic’s founding father Ayatollah Khomeini. And according to human rights groups, he also fired pellets and live ammunition at protesters who threw stones, set police cars on fire and set fire to public buildings. Other images showed women setting fire to their veils, or symbolically cutting their hair, cheered on by crowds, in various cities. Iran denounces “foreign plot” behind the protest movement, pointing the finger at the United States, its sworn enemy. – “Rioters” – His head of diplomacy, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, criticized “the interventionist approach of the United States in the affairs of Iran”, accusing them of supporting “the rioters”. The European Union has denounced the “widespread and disproportionate use of force” against protesters, and Berlin has called on the Iranian authorities “not to resort to violence.” Condemning the “brutal repression”, France said it was examining with its European partners “the options available in response to these new massive violations of women’s rights and human rights in Iran”. US President Joe Biden denounced the crackdown on the protests, saying he stands in solidarity with the “brave women of Iran.” And the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed its “great concern” about the “violent response (…) of the security forces” as well as the “restrictions (…) on communications telephone, Internet and social networks. networks But the Iranian authorities remain firm. On Saturday, conservative President Ebrahim Raisi urged the security forces to act “firmly against those who undermine the security and peace of the country and the people.” Behind him, the head of the Judiciary, Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei, ruled out any “indulgence” towards the instigators of the “riots”. However, Grand Ayatollah Hossein Nouri Hamedani, a leading conservative cleric and staunch supporter of Ayatollah Khamenei, called on the authorities to “listen to the demands of the people.” The protests are the largest since those of November 2019, caused by the rise in gasoline prices in Iran, which had been harshly repressed (230 dead according to an official report, more than 300 according to Amnesty International). strawberry/vl/feb

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