Conflicts & War

Tehran accuses West of using protests to destabilize Iran

Tehran, Sep 26 (EFE).- Iran accused European and United States authorities on Monday of using the protests that have erupted in the country — after the death of a young woman in police custody — to destabilize the middle eastern power.

The death of Mahsa Amini — a 22 year-old Kurdish woman who was detained by the morality police and was allegedly brutally killed whilst under arrest ten days ago — has sparked demonstrations that have left at least 41 dead and 1,186 detained.

“The political leaders of the United States, in some cases Europe, and their media outlets have abused a tragic incident, which is under investigation, and supported the rioters,” Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani told Nour news.

The diplomat took to Instagram to accuse Western politicians of interfering with Iran’s internal affairs and of supporting anti-government protests while ignoring “the presence of millions of people in the streets and squares of the country in support of the system”.

The official added that those who claim to defend human rights in Iran should also “end decades of cruel and inhumane sanctions” against the country.

Iran’s foreign ministry summoned both the British and Norwegian ambassadors over the weekend, after meeting with a Swedish delegation, to voice dissatisfaction over the reaction in those countries to protests that have swept the country.

Iran also accused the US on Saturday of breaching Tehran’s sovereignty after Washington authorized technology companies to expand online services across the country in response to an internet shutdown amid the mounting protests.

Amini was arrested on September 13 by the morality police in Tehran for wearing her veil incorrectly. She was taken to a police station for “an hour of re-education”.

She died on September 16 in a hospital where she arrived in a coma after suffering a heart attack, which the authorities have attributed to health problems, something her family has rejected.

Protests erupted after the news of Amini’s death and have since snowballed across the country with demonstrators clashing with the security forces who have been violently quashing the deadly uprising.

“The rising death toll is an alarming indication of just how ruthless the authorities’ assault on human life has been under the darkness of the internet shutdown,” Heba Morayef, Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International, said.

“There is no such thing as ‘an impartial investigation’ within Iran. UN member states must go beyond toothless statements, hear the cries for justice from victims and human rights defenders in Iran and urgently set up an independent UN investigative mechanism.”

Iranian authorities do not report on the number of deaths, but Iranian state television stated that the death toll stands at 41.

Provincial authorities have reported some 1,186 police detentions. EFE


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