Mourners in Iran gather at grave of Mahsa Amini despite crackdown

Mahsa Amini

Scores of mourners in Iran have gathered at the grave of Mahsa Amini to mark 40 days since her death – the woman whose death due to torture by Iranian moral police has triggered an unprecedented wave of protests against the authoritarian regime of Iran. The mourners gathered at the grave despite of increased security measures and crackdown on the women led protests in Iran.

Videos shared online show dozens of men and women shouting “Woman, life, freedom” and “Death to the dictator”, at Aichi cemetery in Saqqez, the hometown of Amini in the western province of Kurdistan.

Anger had flared at Amini’s funeral last month and sparked the biggest protests in the Islamic republic in at least three years. Young women and schoolgirls are leading the demonstrations, removing and burning their headscarves, chopping down their hair and confronting security forces.

On Wednesday morning, mourners headed to Amini’s gravesite, despite of warning being issued by the security services to her family to not hold the ceremony, threatening that “they should worry for their son’s life”.

Read | Iranian President says US ‘dragging feet’ over nuclear deal

Since the protests have erupted across Iran, the security forces have made use of live ammunition and tear gas to disperse the demonstrators, killing more than 200 people, according to various rights groups. Untold number of people have been arrested, with estimations in the thousands. Iranian judicial officials announced this week they would bring over 600 people to trial over their role in the protests, including 315 in Tehran, 201 in the neighboring Alborz province and 105 in the southwestern province of Khuzestan, according to The Associated Press.

Tehran prosecutor Ali Salehi told the state run IRNA news agency that four protesters have been charged with “war against God,” which in Iran is a punishable offense by death.

Unverified footage that has been posted by the Oslo based group Iran Human Rights (IHR) has showed people gathering outside the Kurd hotel in Saqqez during the night time protests. IHR said 141 demonstrators were killed during the crackdown on the Amini protests, as per an updated death toll on Tuesday.

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