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Mahsa Amini protests: Death toll rises to 35 in Iran

Mahsa Amini: Death toll rises to 35 amid Iran crackdown on protests
MENA
3 min read
24 September, 2022
The death toll in Iran's protests against the Morality Police following the death of Mahsa Amini has risen to 35, according to state media.
Iranians across several cities in the country have been protesting in Mahsa Amini's name for over a week [Getty]

The death toll in the ongoing protests following the death of a woman in police custody in Iran has risen to 35, according to state media as reported by AFP.

The protests which have swept the country are in response to the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini who died in custody after she was arrested and reportedly beaten by the Islamic Republic’s 'Morality Police' last week for allegedly not wearing the hijab "properly".

"The number of people who died in recent riots in the country has risen to 35 people," the Borna news agency, which is affiliated to the sports ministry, said late on Friday, citing state television.

 

Several cities, including the capital Tehran, have witnessed large-scale protests for over a week following Amini’s death, which has sent shockwaves across the country.

The protests have also demanded for an end to so-called morality laws and the practices of the morality police amid growing resentment towards the country’s waning economic conditions as well as Iran’s theocratic system of government.

In videos and images shared online, women can be seen cutting their hair, taking off their hijabs and burning the Iranian flag in protest over Amini’s death. Iranian authorities have reportedly shut down the internet in Tehran and parts of the Kurdish region- including access to social media platforms such as Instagram and WhatsApp- in an attempt to curb mounting anger that has spread across the country.

On Thursday, Iranian state television suggested that up to 26 people have so far been killed amid the ongoing unrest, according to The Associated Press, but did not elaborate further on how the death toll reached that figure.

However, the official death toll, which was released also on Thursday, stood at 17 - including five security personnel.

Amini, a Kurdish-Iranian, fell into a coma after allegedly suffering a blow to her head, and was pronounced dead three days after her arrest in Tehran on 13 September.

The 22-year-old was taken into police custody after being apprehended at a metro station in Tehran in order to be "educated" on the country’s morality laws.

Amini’s death has also sparked anger and condemnation from the international community.

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The Morality Police, who continue to claim that Amini died of natural causes, were placed on a sanctions blacklist by the US on Thursday.

Meanwhile,  pro-hijab rallies were staged in support of security forces who have quashed protests across Tehran, Ahvaz and Tabriz and other cities.

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The New Arab Staff & Agencies