Women hold placards reads 'We weave freedom everywhere for Mahsa Amini' and shout slogans during a rally marking the first anniversary of Iranian woman Mahsa Amini's death, in Istanbul, Turkey, 16 September 2023. EFE/EPA/ERDEM SAHIN

UN condemns Iran’s crackdown on commemoration of Mahsa Amini’s death

Geneva, Sep 19 (EFE).- The United Nations on Tuesday condemned the Iranian government’s crackdown on public events and preparations to mark the first death anniversary of Mahsa Amini, a young Iranian woman who died in police custody a year ago.

“After months of brutally repressing demonstrations over the course of the past year, authorities have imposed restrictions and threatened reprisals against public commemorations planned to mark a year since Jina Mahsa Amini’s tragic death,” read a statement by UN experts.

The UN officials said that Iranian authorities had briefly detained Amini’s father and warned him against marking his daughter’s death anniversary.

“Security forces surrounded Mahsa Amini’s family home on 16 September, preventing the family from leaving their residence for a graveside memorial,” the experts noted.

They underlined that Iranian security forces, deployed in Tehran and several Kurdish cities, had deterred large-scale public protests and detained over 260 individuals over the weekend in connection with the demonstrations.

Moreover, at least two people were injured when security forces opened fire on protesters, according to the UN officials.

The experts alleged that Iranian authorities had failed to conduct “an independent and transparent investigation” into Amini’s death and the subsequent nationwide unrests, which resulted in “the deaths of hundreds of protestors” since September 2022.

They added that an investigation conducted by a special Iranian committee, which attributed the death of the young woman to underlying medical conditions, “may not have met international human rights norms and standards.”

Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman, died in police custody on Sep. 16, 2022, following her arrest for alleged non-compliance with Iran’s compulsory use of the Islamic veil for women, known as the hijab.

Her death sparked nationwide unrest in Iran, leading the authorities to respond with violent crackdowns on demonstrators, resulting in the arrest of thousands of people and execution of at least seven.

“Iranian authorities must end their crackdown against those who participated in the protests against Jina Mahsa Amini’s death and deliver justice and accountability for grave violations committed during the 2022 protests,” the statement said.

Human rights groups estimate that around 500 protesters have died, and at least 20,000 others have been detained in Iran since the protests began in September of last year. EFE