At Least 100 Sentenced to Death in Iran as Women-Led Protest Movement Gains Momentum

Least 100 people have been sentenced to death or charged with capital offences in connection with the protests in iran, with five women among those at risk of execution. two men, mohsen shekari and majidreza rahnavard, were executed this month after what activists said were sham trials. the protests began over 100 days ago following the death in custody of mahsa amini, who was detained by morality police in tehran for allegedly wearing her hijab “improperly”.
the protests in iran began in september, following the death of mahsa amini in tehran. since then, the protests have spread throughout the country, with demonstrations taking place in major cities such as tehran, isfahan, shiraz, and tabriz. authorities have alleged that the protests are foreign-backed “riots,” and have responded with lethal force. ihr has reported that at least 476 protesters have been killed, including 64 children and 34 women.
mohammad ghobadlou has been convicted of “enmity against god” after being accused of driving into a group of policemen during a protest in tehran in september and killing one of them. mojgan kavousi, a kurdish language teacher and human rights defender, has been accused of “corruption on earth” and “provoking people to depravity by publishing posts on social media”. ms kavousi is one of five women facing charges that carry the death penalty. amnesty international has expressed its concern that she was subjected to torture or ill-treatment in custody, citing a forensic report that pointed to bruising and injuries on her arm, elbow and shoulder blade. the protests are believed to have been sparked by the death of mahsa amini, and the authorities’ response of lethal force and the threat of the death penalty has only served to fuel the protests further. chess player sara khadem has also taken part in a tournament in kazakhstan without a hijab, in an apparent sign of solidarity with the women-led protest movement. ms kavousi’s mother has stated that her daughter suffers from bipolar disorder. the uk has expressed urgency in seeking information from iranian authorities regarding reports that the revolutionary guards had arrested seven british-iranian dual nationals who were allegedly involved in the protests.

By Evey Lovelace

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