The Iranian president said that Amin’s death was a “tragic event”, but “chaos” was unacceptable

The Iranian president said that Amin's death was a "tragic event", but "chaos" was unacceptable
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  • Raisi says that everyone was saddened by Amini’s death
  • He says that “chaos” is unacceptable and supports the security forces
  • The death toll is rising as protests spread to more than 80 cities
  • The woman’s death in the custody of the morality police sparked protests

DUBAI, Sept 28 (Reuters) – Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi said on Wednesday that the death of a young woman in prison had “saddened” everyone in the Islamic Republic, but warned that “chaos” would not be tolerated amid widespread protests over Mahsa. Amy’s death.

Amini’s death two weeks ago sparked anti-government protests across Iran, with protesters often calling for an end to the Islamic cleric’s more than 40-year rule.

“We are all saddened by this tragic event… (But) Chaos is unacceptable,” Raisi said in an interview on state television, as protests continue in the country.

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“The red line of the government is the safety of our people… People cannot be allowed to disrupt the peace of society with riots.”

Despite the rising death toll and a fierce crackdown by security forces using tear gas, batons and in some cases live bullets, videos posted on social media show Iranians protesting, chanting “Death to the dictator”.

A senior Iranian official told Reuters that the fall of the Islamic Republic appears remote in the near term as they are determined not to show the kind of weakness they believe sealed the fate of the US-backed shah in 1979.

Angry demonstrations have spread to more than 80 cities in the country since September. The death of 22-year-old Amini 13 after he was arrested for “improper clothing” by morality police enforcing the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code.

Amini, from the northwestern Kurdish city of Saghez, died in hospital after falling into a coma, sparking the first major protests on the streets of Iran since authorities cracked down on protests against rising gasoline prices in 2019.

Raisi, who ordered an investigation into Ami’s death, said, “the forensic expert will submit a report on his death in the coming days.”

While Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has yet to comment on the protests, the hard-line watchdog urged the judiciary to “deal decisively with the main culprits and those responsible for killing and injuring innocent people and security forces.”

Khamenei appoints six senior clerics to a 12-member body known as the Guardian Council.


State media reported that 41 people, including police and pro-government militia, were killed during the protests. Iranian human rights groups said the death toll was much higher.

Raisi supported Iran’s security forces and said “they sacrifice their lives for the security of the country.”

Dozens of Iranian celebrities, football players and artists supported the demonstrations inside and outside the country. According to state media, Iran’s strict judicial system has said it will press charges against them.

“Whoever participated and fueled the chaos and riots will be held accountable,” Raisi warned, adding that “no one should be afraid to speak their mind.”

Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard Corps said on Wednesday it had fired missiles and drones at militant targets in the Kurdish region of neighboring northern Iraq. read more

Iranian authorities have accused armed Iranian Kurdish dissidents of fueling the unrest, particularly in Iran’s northwest, home to more than 10 million Kurds.

Washington condemned the attack, calling it an “unreasonable violation of Iraq’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.” read more

On Wednesday morning, demonstrators in Tehran chanted “Down with the mullahs!” “Death to the dictator!” and “Death to the leader (Khamenei) for the crime of all these years!”

“Reuters” could not verify the authenticity of the videos shared on social media.

Human rights defenders, human rights defenders, lawyers, civil society activists and at least 18 journalists report hundreds of arrests.

Amin’s death drew widespread international condemnation. Iran has blamed the unrest on Kurdish dissidents, which it calls “thugs” linked to “foreign enemies”.

Tehran has accused the United States and some European countries of using the riots to destabilize the Islamic Republic.

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Additional report by Ali Sultan in Sulaymaniyah; Written by Parisa Hafezi; Edited by Matthew Lewis and Alistair Bell

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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