Tehran 40 days after the death of the young Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini are in Iran Crowds of people took to the streets. In her hometown, people flocked to the grave along a main road, the Hammihan newspaper reported on Wednesday. In Iran, people traditionally mourn the death of a family member for 40 days. Earlier, activists had on the occasion of the day of mourning called for nationwide protests.
Security forces in Sakes in Kurdistan province opened fire on mourners, an eyewitness said. “Dozens were arrested.” People had gathered at Amini’s grave to commemorate the 22-year-old. The semi-state news agency Insa reported that around 10,000 people took part on the last day of the mourning period.
In the capital Tehran, security forces used tear gas against a demonstration by doctors. The doctors demonstrated on Wednesday against the presence of security forces in the clinics, where participants in the protests are also treated.
Eyewitnesses confirmed a massive presence of police officers and checks on the main streets in Tehran. Many shops remained closed for fear of riots. The situation in Tehran was tense. In many places, demonstrators also shouted anti-Islamic Republican slogans.
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Towards evening people also came together in Tehran to sing exuberantly on the street. In the north of the metropolis, many women were seen without the obligatory headscarf, as eyewitnesses reported.
The trigger for the system-critical mass protests in Iran was the death of the 22-year-old Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini. The vice squad arrested her for allegedly violating Islamic dress codes. The woman died in police custody on September 16.
Protest actions also at universities
Since her death, thousands have been demonstrating across the country against the government’s repressive course and the Islamic system of rule. According to human rights activists, more than ten thousand people were arrested in connection with protests and at least 240 were killed.
Students also continued to protest at universities in Iran on Wednesday. In Tehran and other parts of the country, there were also clashes with security forces at universities, who acted violently, as videos on social networks showed. These reports could not initially be independently verified.
Because of the Iranian authorities’ crackdown on the protest movement there, Germany is tightening its stance against Tehran. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) said in a press statement on Wednesday that there could be no “business as usual” in bilateral relations.
EU has decided on sanctions
In addition to the sanctions decided at EU level, additional national entry restrictions are to be imposed. The already limited economic contacts are to be further reduced, also with a view to the still existing business relationships of Iranian banks.
Meanwhile, Iran responded to punitive measures against the country, putting European politicians and institutions on a sanctions list. A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday mentions the Persian-language department of Deutsche Welle (DW).
Members of the European Parliament and two German companies are also affected. About a week ago, Iran put more than a dozen British people and institutions on a so-called terror list. Iran accuses the institutions and people of “supporting terrorism”.
The director of Deutsche Welle, Peter Limbourg, condemned the move in a statement. “The regime in Iran has been threatening our colleagues in the Farsi editorial team and their families for a long time. This is unacceptable. The regime promotes terrorism internally and externally. I expect that politics in Germany and Europe will increase the pressure on the regime. Being on such a list will not stop us from providing reliable information to our users in Iran.”
Attack in Shiraz
According to the media, at least 15 people have died in an attack in the Iranian city of Shiraz. In Shiraz, three attackers from a car opened fire on pilgrims and workers at the shrine of Shah Cheragh, a brother of the eighth Imam Reza, the state news agency Irna reported. The police arrested two of them, and the third is being sought.
Irna blamed Sunni extremists for the attack. The majority of Muslims in Iran belong to the Shia faith. According to the semi-state news agency Tasnim, women and children are among the dead.