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Three dead in Iran hijab protests over Amini's death

By :International Desk
Published : Sep 20, 2022 09:50:00 PM | World

Three people have been killed during protests in Iran's Kurdistan province over the death of a young woman after she was arrested by "morality police", the region's governor said Tuesday.

"The three were killed suspiciously" as part of "a plot by the enemy", the governor, Ismail Zarei Koosha, was quoted as saying by Fars news agency, without specifying when the fatalities occurred.

 Meanwhile, the UN has expressed alarm at Iranian authorities' response to protests sparked by the death of the woman detained for breaking hijab laws.

Human rights groups said three people were killed on Monday as security forces opened fire at men, women and children who took to the streets of Kurdistan province for a fourth day.

Protests also took place in Tehran.

The UN urged Iran's leaders to allow peaceful demonstrations and launch an impartial probe into the woman's death.

Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old ethnic Kurd from the western city of Saqez, died in hospital on Friday after spending three days in a coma.

She was with her brother in Tehran on Tuesday when she was arrested by morality police, who accused her of breaking the law requiring women to cover their hair with a hijab, or headscarf, and their arms and legs with loose clothing. She fell into a coma shortly after collapsing at a detention centre.

Acting UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al-Nashif said there were reports that Ms Amini was beaten on the head with a baton by morality police officers and that her head was banged against one of their vehicles.

The police have denied that she was mistreated and said she suffered "sudden heart failure". But her family has said she was fit and healthy.

"Mahsa Amini's tragic death and allegations of torture and ill-treatment must be promptly, impartially and effectively investigated by an independent competent authority, that ensures, in particular, that her family has access to justice and truth," Ms Al-Nashif said.

She noted that the UN had received "numerous, and verified, videos of violent treatment of women" as morality police expanded their street patrols in recent months to crack down on those perceived to be wearing "loose hijab".

"The authorities must stop targeting, harassing, and detaining women who do not abide by the hijab rules," she added, calling for their repeal.

An aide to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei paid a visit to Amini's family on Monday and told them that "all institutions will take action to defend the rights that were violated", state media reported.