Conflicts & War

Death toll rises to 35 in Iran protests: state TV

Tehran, Sep 24 (EFE).- Iranian state television said 35 people have now been killed in protests that have shaken the country for eight days since the death of Mahsa Amini in custody.

Amini, 22, was arrested last Tuesday by the morality police for not wearing her hijab in accordance with the country’s strict Islamic dress code. She collapsed at a detention center and spent three days in a coma before she died in hospital last Friday.

IRIB state television reported late Friday night that 35 people, including policemen, have been killed in riots, raising the estimate from an earlier 26.

The protests began on Friday the 16th after Amini died, and have been spreading throughout the country.

In recent days it has been difficult to follow the protests as authorities have restricted the internet. Starting Wednesday mobile networks have been cut from afternoon to morning, making it difficult for protesters, journalists and activists to use social media to share photos, videos and information about what is happening.

Iran’s military on Friday warned that it is ready to intervene to defend national security.

“These desperate actions are part of the evil strategy of the enemy to weaken the Islamic regime,” the army said, following the government line that the demonstrations are being incited by a foreign enemy with the help of intelligence agencies and embassies from other countries.

Despite internet outages and warnings from the authorities that they will not allow “chaos,” many Iranians protested again Friday across the country.

“You can’t kill us all!” a protester shouted at police in the northern city of Rudsar, according to an unverified video shared by activists and journalists.

Counter-protesters have also gathered across the country in support for authorities.

Amini was arrested while visiting Tehran and taken to a police station to attend a one-hour “briefing class,” but just hours later collapsed and was admitted to hospital.

Iranian police said the woman had suffered “sudden heart failure” and released a video where a woman is seen falling to the ground while speaking to an officer in the police station. Amini’s family has not confirmed her identity in the footage and said she was fit and healthy.

Her death has galvanized thousands of Iranian men and women through pain and empathy, unlike other occasions when the demonstrations were reduced to fragmented social groups mobilized by the state of the economy. EFE


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