DUBAI: Iran must decisively deal with the protests that swept the country after the death in custody of a woman detained by the Islamic Republic’s morality police, President Ebrahim Raisi said on Saturday (September 24). said.
Iranian state television said 35 people were killed in the week-long demonstrations and protests spread to most of the country’s 31 provinces.
On Friday, state-run rallies were held in several Iranian cities to counter anti-government protests, with the military pledging to confront the “enemy” behind the unrest.
State media quoted Raisi on Saturday as saying Iran must “resolutely deal with those who oppose national security and tranquility.”
Raisi was speaking on the phone with the family of a member of the Basij Volunteer Force who was killed while participating in a crackdown on riots in a city northeast of Mashhad.
State media reported that the president “emphasized the need to distinguish between protests and public order and disturbances, calling these events … riots.”
Protests took place a week ago in northwestern Iran at the funeral of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman who died after falling into a coma after being detained by morality police enforcing hijab rules on women’s attire. erupted.
Her death has rekindled anger over issues such as restrictions on personal liberties in Iran, a strict dress code for women and the unsettling economic sanctions.
Women have played an important role in protests by waving and burning veils. Some people publicly cut their hair as furious crowds called for the downfall of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
The protests are the largest to sweep the country since the 2019 demonstrations over fuel prices, when Reuters reported that 1,500 people died in a crackdown on protesters. It was the bloodiest conflict in the history of the Islamic Republic.
Iranian media outlets reported on Saturday that 739 protesters had been arrested in the northern province of Gilan, which borders the Caspian Sea.
The activist Twitter account 1500tasvir, which has 125,000 followers, said the communication channel with the northwestern town of Oshnavieh was cut and landline phones were down.
Oshnavieh, one of several towns in northwestern Iran, home to most of the 10 million Kurds, went on strike on Friday. Kurdish rights group Hengaw posted a video showing protesters taking control of part of the town on Friday.
Reuters was unable to verify the authenticity of the video.
https://www.channelnewsasia.com/world/iran-must-deal-decisively-protests-president-says-2962801 Iran must deal decisively with protests, president says