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Mahsa Amini: Five people killed in Iran during protests over death of a woman, human rights group says



CNN

Five people have been killed by Iranian security forces during protests caused by the death of Mahsa Amini, Who is being held by the police?according to a human rights watchdog.

The Hengaw Human Rights Foundation, a Norwegian-registered organization that monitors human rights abuses in Iran, said five people were shot dead during protests in Iran’s Kurdish region on Monday. It said another 75 people were injured in other cities over the weekend.

The United Nations Acting High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al-Nashif issued a statement on Tuesday expressing alarm at the “violent response of the [Iranian] security forces” to the protests.

Meanwhile, the governor of Tehran, Mohsen Mansouri, accused protesters of attacking police and destroying public property, claiming in a Twitter post late Monday that the protesters ” fully organized and trained to create disturbances in Tehran.”

CNN has not been able to independently verify reports of the dead and injured.

Protests broke out after the death of AminiA 22-year-old Iranian woman died in Tehran after being detained by Iranian ethics police last week.

Iranian officials say that Amini died on Friday after suffering a “heart attack” and was in a coma following her arrest last Tuesday. However, her family said she did not have a pre-existing heart condition, Emtedad news, a media that advocates for Iranian reform, said it had spoken to Amini’s father.

Edited security camera footage released by Iranian state media shows Amini collapsing at a “reformatory” center, where she was taken to receive “instructions” on how to dress.

Iran’s ethics police are part of the country’s law enforcement force and are tasked with enforcing the Islamic Republic’s strict social codes, including the country’s dress code. Women must wear a headscarf or headscarf in public.

The United Nations Office for Human Rights (OHCHR) said in a statement on Tuesday that the ethics police had expanded their street patrols in recent months and had arrested women believed to be wearing ” loose headscarf” for verbal and physical harassment and arrest.

“(OHCHR) has received numerous and verified videos of violent treatment of women, including slapping women in the face, hitting them with batons and throwing them in police cars,” it said. .

Amini, 22, was detained by Iran's ethics police and died on Friday.

Al-Nashif said Amini’s death and allegations of torture and ill-treatment must be “timely, impartially and effectively investigated by an independent competent authority.”

Iranian police said Amini’s death was an “unfortunate incident” and denied she suffered physical harm while in custody, Iran’s semi-official Fars News news agency said on Monday.

Iranian authorities say they have conducted an autopsy on Amini’s body. Speaking Saturday on state television, the director of Iran’s Forensic Health Organization, Mehdi Forozesh, said the results would be announced after further examination by medical experts.

Speaking at a news conference on Monday, Greater Tehran Police Commander Hossein Rahimi said police had “done everything” to keep her alive.

But explanations from the police were not accepted by the protesters. The UN says thousands of people have taken to the streets in cities including Tehran, Isfahan, Karaj, Mashhad, Rasht, Saqqes and Sanandaj to demand justice and accountability.

The semi-official Fars news agency reported protesters were “unconvinced” by the police’s justification for Amini’s death and claimed she had died “under torture”.

After Amini’s funeral on Saturday, security forces fired tear gas at protesters in her hometown of Saqqez, in Iran’s Kurdistan province, Fars said, while Iran’s semi-official Mehr news agency said protesters were demanding answers from police and allegedly threw rocks at the governor’s office.

Fars also released a video showing protesters rallying in the provincial capital of Kurdistan, Sanandaj, late Sunday and chanting slogans against the officials.

A video shared by the Free Iranian Workers Union shows protesters in Sanandaj chanting “death to the dictator.” Another video shows women removing their headscarves and waving their hands in protest in Tehran.

Separately, internet watchdog NetBlocks on Monday said its real-time data showed “almost complete disruption to internet connectivity in Sanandaj.”

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