Death of Iranian woman in police custody sparks protests in Toronto

On Friday afternoon, protesters took to the steps of Sidney Smith Hall at the University of Toronto. Passionate cries of « Say his name! » and, « Mahsa Amini » rang out repeatedly, as those present hoisted signs condemning the September 16, 2022 death of the 22-year-old Iranian woman.

Doctoral student Maryam Fashandi was one of the organizers of the rally. The goal: To raise awareness about the escalating situation in Iran and the treatment of women.

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“We try to be their voice,” Fashandi told Global News ahead of the event.

Mahsa Amini’s death has led to widespread condemnation. The US government imposed sanctions on Iran’s vice squad on Thursday.

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The day before, Canadian MPs passed a motion of solidarity with Iranian women.

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Iran protests: Canada’s House of Commons passes ‘solidarity’ motion after woman’s death

Protests have intensified in Iran since the death of Amini, 22, who died while in the custody of Iranian morality police for wearing her hijab too closely.

“We want our basic human rights, we don’t want anyone telling us what to wear. We don’t want to be beaten to death, we don’t want to be imprisoned for free speech,” Fashandi said.

According to BBC reports, Amini fell into a coma and died just hours after being arrested.

The broadcaster also reported that witnesses accused police officers of beating Amini as she went to a detention center.

According to the Associated Press, authorities insist she suffered from heart failure and was not beaten. Her family says she had no history of heart problems.

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© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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