Iran to hold public trials of 1,000 people accused of participating in Mahsa Amini protests


Iran has charged around 1,000 people in Tehran province for their alleged involvement in nationwide protests sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody, the official IRNA news agency reported on Monday.

The trials of the defendants will be heard in public in the coming days, IRNA said, quoting Ali Al-Qasi Mehr, chief judge of Tehran province. Iranian media said over the weekend that the trials of several protesters began last week.

People who « have serious charges, including assaulting or martyring security guards and setting fire to public property… have been summoned to the Revolutionary Court, » Mehr said, according to IRNA.

The number of people charged in Tehran province stood at 315 on Saturday, according to a separate tally by the official ISNA news agency, which also reported that more than 700 other people had been charged in other Iranian provinces.

It comes as Iranian authorities step up efforts to end an uprising that has been going on in the country for more than six weeks.

The nationwide protests were first sparked by the death of Mahsa (also known as Zhina) Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian woman who died in mid-September after being detained by police in the customs of the country. Since then, protesters across Iran have coalesced around a series of grievances with the regime.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard leader Hossein Salami told protesters on Saturday it would be their last day to take to the streets.

“Lay aside the wickedness. Today is the last day of the riots. Don’t take to the streets anymore. What more do you want from these people’s lives? he said during a funeral procession in Shiraz.

Salami called the protests a ‘conspiracy’ which is the ‘product of uniting the police forces of the United States, England, Saudi Arabia and the Zionist regime’ – messages that have been used repeatedly by the regime.

« Don’t turn college into a battleground of America against the nation, » Salami said, adding that « a few students echoed foreign voices. »

Iranian authorities are trying to end weeks of protests.

Despite Salami’s warning, students continued to demonstrate in large numbers at several of the country’s major universities on Sunday.

Videos obtained by CNN show violent clashes between security forces and student protesters.

One of those arrested on Sunday was Toomaj Salehi, an Iranian underground rapper known for his lyrics against the Islamic Republic, according to IRNA.

Toomaj, known by his first name, was accused of « anti-government propaganda activities, cooperating with hostile governments and forming illegal groups with the aim of creating insecurity in the country », the agency said. , citing the judiciary of the province of Isfahan.

He was arrested in Chaharmahal and Bakhtiar province, west of Isfahan in southwestern Iran, according to Fars News.

IRNA posted a photo of Toomaj blindfolded in the backseat of a car.

« The accused played a key role in instigating, instigating and abetting the riots in Isfahan province and Shahin Shahr city, » IRNA reported.

Toomaj has become known as a prominent voice in the protests, tweeting calls for demonstrations and reposting protest videos from around the country.

The lyrics of the latest music video posted on his YouTube page on October 24 sings: “Somebody’s crime was to dance with the wind in your hair. Someone’s crime was to have been brave and criticized… 44 years of your government. This is the year of failure.

A post on his official Twitter account confirmed the news of the rapper’s arrest. An administrator outside Iran claimed to have permission from Toomaj to post on his behalf and to keep the account active.

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