Desperate plea as Iran's streets 'turn into a war zone'
Protests continue in Iran as widespread discontent morphs into a full blown revolution – as the regime steps up its crackdown.
Security forces for the Iranian regime have opened fire on protesters and used tear gas as the uprising gains momentum, CNN reported.
The protests were ignited by the death of a young woman in police custody and continued across Iran on Sunday (local time) in defiance of a crackdown by the authorities.
Human rights groups say at least 185 people, including children, had been killed in the ongoing demonstrations.
Behrouz Boochani, Associate Professor at UNSW, was among the many to warn that Kurdistan in the west of the country was under attack by regime security forces in the latest crackdown.
"People on the ground say that the city has become a war zone," he tweeted this morning.
Kurdistan in the west of Iran is under attack by regime security forces. This city is Sanandaj, where protests have been non -stop for 24 days. People on the ground say that the city has become a war zone. #Sanandaj #IranRevolution2022 pic.twitter.com/HOZMSHcYix
— Behrouz Boochani (@BehrouzBoochani) October 10, 2022
Meanwhile a video posted on Twitter over the weekend by the widely-followed activist 1500tasvir showed security forces armed with clubs attacking students at a high school in Tehran.
In another video, a man shouted "don't hit my wife, she is pregnant," while trying to protect her from riot police in the city of Rafsanjan on Saturday, Reuters reported.
Anti-government protests that began on September 17 at the funeral of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in her Kurdish town of Saqez, have turned into the biggest challenge to Iran's clerical leaders in years, with protesters calling for the downfall of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
The protests have been driven by the younger generation, particularly young women who are revolting against the strict islamic rules enforced in the country.
Videos of young girls taking off their headscarves and yelling "death to the dictator" have been circulating on social media.
A video shared by Amnesty ambassador Nazanin Boniadi on Monday purported to show a tearful Iranian girl pleading with the older generation to join the uprising.
This young women is begging older Iranians to join this revolution. The same Iranians whose ‘79 revolution stripped her generation of their freedoms. She asks “how many youth must be killed before you take to the streets?”#MahsaAmini #IranRevolution2022 #مهسا_امینی pic.twitter.com/3xkG9hvbcY
— Nazanin Boniadi (@NazaninBoniadi) October 10, 2022
Authorities have described the protests as a plot by Iran's foes, including the United States. They have accused armed dissidents among others of violence that has reportedly left at least 20 members of the security forces dead.
Videos shared on social media showed protests in dozens of cities across Iran early on Sunday with hundreds of high school girls and university students participating despite the use of tear gas, clubs, and in many cases live ammunition by the security forces, rights groups said.
The Iranian authorities have denied that live bullets have been used.
Details of casualties have trickled out slowly, partly because of internet restrictions imposed by the authorities.
The semi-official Tasnim news agency quoted the country's deputy interior minister warning of harsh sentences for those it referred to as rioters.
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