Protesters hurl stones at banner of Iranian supreme leader

‘Death to dictator’: Protests after funeral of Iran woman held by ‘morality police’

Angry protests seen in Kurdistan Province city following burial of Mahsa Amini, 22, arrested in Tehran last week for alleged fault with hijab; forces open fire, tear gas crowds

Protesters chant in the Iranian city of Saqez, following the burial of Mahsa Amini (right), who died following her arrest by the so-called morality police, September 17, 2022. (Screenshot: Twitter; courtesy)
Protesters chant in the Iranian city of Saqez, following the burial of Mahsa Amini (right), who died following her arrest by the so-called morality police, September 17, 2022. (Screenshot: Twitter; courtesy)

Protests continued Saturday in Iran, a day after a young woman died after she was arrested in Tehran by the notorious so-called “morality police.”

Mahsa Amini, 22, was on a visit with her family to the Iranian capital when she was detained on Tuesday by the police unit responsible for enforcing the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code for women, which includes the compulsory wearing of the headscarf in public. Amini was allegedly in violation of that law.

She died in hospital several days later.

Police said Amini suffered a heart attack, but activists said she suffered a blow to the head while in custody.

Hundreds gathered during her funeral Saturday in the city of Saqez in Kurdistan Province, and chanted “death to the dictator,” footage posted to social media showed.

Other videos following Amini’s burial showed Iranian security forces apparently opening fire and launching tear gas at protesters.

According to the UK-based Saudi-sponsored opposition outlet Iran International, several people were wounded in the confrontations.

A video published by the outlet showed a group of protesters hurling stones at a banner of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.

Amini was arrested by the morality police after officers reportedly apparently found fault with her headscarf, or hijab.

The headscarf has been compulsory for women in Iran since the 1979 Islamic Revolution and members of the morality police enforce the strict dress code.

According to The Guardian, Amini’s family was told the young woman would be released from the police station after a “re-education session.”

Police said Thursday that Amini was taken to a hospital after she allegedly had a heart attack while in custody.

Persian-language media, including the Iran Wire website and the Shargh newspaper, have quoted her family as saying that the previously-healthy Amini had been rushed to hospital in a coma a few hours after her arrest.

It is not yet clear what happened between her arrival at the police station and her departure for the hospital.

The 1500tavsir social media channel, which monitors human rights violations in Iran, said the young woman had suffered a blow to the head.

Mahsa Amini, 22, who died after being arrested by Iranian modesty police. (Social media)

Images posted on social media showed crowds gathering outside the hospital where she was being treated before she died, and police trying to disperse the dozens who had gathered.

People were also shown angrily shouting anti-regime slogans later that evening in Tehran.

Amini’s case has drawn condemnation from Iranian celebrities, athletes and other public figures, as well as US officials.

US President Joe Biden’s national security advisor, Jake Sullivan, denounced her death.

“We are deeply concerned by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was reportedly beaten in custody by Iran’s morality police,” he tweeted Friday.

“Her death is unforgivable. We will continue to hold Iranian officials accountable for such human rights abuses.”

Iran’s morality police has been criticized in recent years over its treatment of people, especially young women, and videos uploaded on social media have shown officers forcing women into police vehicles.

Activists accuse Iran of being in the throes of a major crackdown that is affecting all areas of society, including a new push against the Baha’i religious minority and death sentences for members of the LGBTQ community, as well as a surge in executions, and arrests of foreign nationals.

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