The Shiite tradition in Iran points out that for 40 days mourning is kept for a deceased. When the date is fulfilled, the family visits the cemetery and a special commemoration is made. That was not going to be the exception Mahsa Aminithe young woman who died on September 16 at the hands of the morality police for not wearing the Islamic veil “appropriately”, and who has unleashed an unusual wave of protests against the regime.
This Wednesday ended the 40 days of mourningY thousands of people flocked to the Aichi Cemetery of his hometownSaqqez, in Iranian Kurdistan, to remember her and remind the government of the ayatollahs that her death has not been in vain and that the protests will continue.
to the cry of “Woman, life and freedom”, and “Death to the dictator”referring to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, some 10,000 people accompanied Amini’s family, despite the fact that the authorities had warned that no kind of demonstration would take place.
Women veils were removed again in protest against the Islamic regime.
As has been happening since September 16, the demonstrations ended in clashes with the security forces, who fired tear gas against the crowd. The Oslo-based Kurdish NGO Hengaw even pointed out that some people were shot directly by the police.
“Security forces fired tear gas and opened fire on people in Zindan square in Saqqez,” the organization wrote on Twitter. A witness recounted the same information on social networks: “The riot police shot the mourners who gathered in the cemetery for the Mahsa commemoration ceremony, (…) dozens of people have been arrested”he said, according to the Reuters agency.
Despite all threats from regime forces, people continue the uprisings in Aichi Cemetery in Saqqez.
October 26, 2022#MahsaAmini#Kurdistan#ZhinaAminipic.twitter.com/V7traffW4V
—Hengaw Organization for Human Rights (@Hengaw_English) October 26, 2022
Meanwhile, the regime again restricted the Internet in the area, as it has been doing in recent weeks to try to control the protests.
READ ALSO: Ministers warn Iran that “the world is watching” its treatment of women
The demonstrations have become , established since 1979 after the triumph of the Islamic Revolution.
In case of Mahsa Amini has aroused in Iranian women – and many men too – an indignation that has been building up for decades. The fact that a 22-year-old girl died because she was not wearing her veil correctly was the trigger for a series of problems in the country, which not only involves the Islamic regime’s repression of any dissidence, but also the economic crisis – accentuated by the Western sanctions – but also government corruption and mismanagement.
“There have been protests against the regime in the last 20 years, but at the beginning the upper class protested, then the middle class, but now it is transversal. The death of this young woman has opened the door for people from all walks of life to speak out.”commented to El Comercio the Peruvian anthropologist and archaeologist Julio Bendezú-Sarmiento, researcher at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in Paris, and expert on Central Asia and Iran.
“It is not only for the rights of women, but in the face of the economic recession and the conservative policies that the government of President Ebrahim Raisí is promoting”, Add. The analyst points out that the president, whose administration began in August of last year, has given more importance to the morale police. “There was even a project to build walls in gardens to divide the men from the women.”
Since mid-September, when the protests began, at least 141 people have diedaccording to Iran Human Rights, a Norway-based advocacy organization.
How far will the regime be able to repress to end the demonstrations?
“The big problem is that the power in Iran – from Ayatollah Khamenei, President Raisi and all the other leaders in the state – has a very conservative vision of what the Islamic Republic has to be like. So, they are going to continue attacking the people who are demonstrating, because they consider that these people want to destroy the regime, and they also point out that they are people manipulated from abroad.”points to El Comercio Mohamed-Badine El Yattioui, Professor of International Relations at the American University in the Emirates in Dubai.
“This will continue until the young people stop demonstrating. But we are going to enter a period of political and social crisis that is going to continue for weeks.”keep going.
Bendezú-Sarmiento also believes that the protests will continue. However, he believes that the repression will increase: “The only thing left for the State is to be more repressive and applying death sentences to those arrested and convicted would not be surprising.”
The Peruvian anthropologist recalls that in Iran the death penalty is applied by hanging and that some executions are even made public. Giving a ‘lesson’ to the citizens would not be far from the regime’s plans.
However, he points out that, although many young people know that they risk being executed, they are no longer afraid to complain. “This suggests that there is a point of no return and that we can move on to a much more consistent revolution.”
READ ALSO: Iran: Mahsa Amini’s family calls for new forensic study to determine cause of death
A youth revolution
For 40 days, the mobilizations – which even closed streets in Tehran – have focused more on universities. As a result, hundreds of university students and professors have been arrested.
Also, at least 1,013 people have been accused by the Iranian Justice for their participation in the protests.
For El Yattioui, the fact that the demonstrations are led, above all, by young people shows the generational conflict in the Persian country. “The people who made the 1979 revolution against the shah were between 20 and 40 years old, with the exception of Ayatollah Khomenei. Now, those people are the ones who control the institutions of the State and they are facing their own children”Explain.
Taking into account that between 70% and 80% of young Iranians are under 30 years of age, it becomes an important factor to understand the challenge that this crisis represents for the Islamic regime.
“This population has not lived through the Islamic Revolution of 1979, so it is a problem for the leaders because there is a conflict of legitimacy. They consider themselves legitimate because they led the revolution, but now their children and grandchildren point out that they have to make their own revolution”.
I, Ronald Payne, am a journalist and author who dedicated his life to telling the stories that need to be said. I have over 7 years of experience as a reporter and editor, covering everything from politics to business to crime.