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Protests in Iran Continue, and the World Joins In

The ongoing protests in Iran continue after hitting their 3 weeks strike. The protests started after the death of the 22 years old Masha Amini, who passed away three days after being arrested by Iran’s morality police for “unsuitable attire”. Amini was arrested after allegedly breaching the country’s rules for women regarding the use of hijab headscarves and modest clothing. Police officers claimed she died of a heart attack, while her family members alleged that Amini died due to police brutality.


Since September 16, 2022, the day of Amini’s death, Iranians all around the world have been protesting against the Islamic Regime, which many consider the biggest show of opposition to the Iranian government in years. Some even consider it a newly “Arab Spring”, alluding to the protests and revolutions that took place in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s of the 20th century. 


Iran International informs that, according to the Iran Human Rights group, so far around 133 people have been killed by police brutality, and many more have been arrested. Amnesty International reports a repeated pattern of police brutality against protesters, specially against women, some of whom have been sexually assaulted. Some of the forms of violence against protesters employed by security officials include the use of live ammunition, metal pellets, and birdshot. According to Amnesty International’s Secretary General, security forces in Iran have been deliberately using ruthless violence and unlawful force against both peaceful and violent protesters.


But the protests have not stayed just within Iran’s borders. On October 2, 2022, most of the world joined Iranian activists under the slogan “Women, Life, Freedom”. 


People demonstrated in major cities such as Auckland, London, Melbourne, New York, Paris, Rome, Seoul, Stockholm, Sydney and Zurich, in solidarity with the cause. 

In Paris, for example, people marched from Place de la Republique to Place de la Nation, chanting against the Islamic Republic with banners displaying the words “Women, Life, Freedom”, which has become the slogan of the protests. 


On social media, people have started recording themselves cutting their hair, an act which became a symbol of the support for iranian activists against the regime. These videos are usually accompanied by the Italian song “Bella Ciao”, the now unofficial anthem of the protest, because it remembers the Partisans who fought against Mussolini’s regime. 


Joining the worldwide demonstrations, university students from cities such as Tehran, Yazd, Kermanshah, Sanandaj, Shiraz and Mashhad, started protesting on October 2, 2022, chanting and posting on social media “Independence, Freedom, death to Khamenei”.


In fact, Iranian forces were reported, on Sunday, to have clashed against the students of one of Iran’s most prestigious universities in Tehran. Iran International reports that at least 100 students were arrested during the demonstrations, and many were beaten up. Some videos posted on social media show students running from security forces and the sound of gunshots, while there had been reports of security officers attacking students dormitories and firing shotguns. There have also been mentions of tear gas used against protesters. 


It is safe to say that Iranians are not alone, and that the world is joining them in their claim for freedom and independence for the Islamic Republic.

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