At least 92 people have been killed in protests that have been consistently suppressed by Iranian authorities, and were sparked by the death of young Mahsa Amini, who was detained by the notorious morality police in mid-September for violating hijab regulations, the group Iran Human Rights (IHR) announced on Sunday.
Kurdish Iranian woman Amini, 22, was pronounced dead on September 16 after being detained for allegedly violating a rule requiring women to wear headscarves and more modest clothing, sparking the biggest wave of unrest in Iran in nearly three years.
She died after falling into a coma after being detained in Tehran. The police dismissed suspicions that the girl was beaten, which caused her to end up in a coma, and the report states that she just collapsed while waiting with other detained women.
On Friday, September 30, another 41 people were killed in clashes in the extreme southeast of Iran, an area bordering Afghanistan and Pakistan. These are data from the IHR, which is headquartered in Oslo and refers to local sources.
Raped teenage girl The report states that the protests were sparked by allegations that the regional police chief raped a teenage girl from the Baluchi ethnic minority. Solidarity rallies with Iranian women, who defiantly burned the hijabs they have been forced to wear since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, were held in various parts of the world, with protests taking place in more than 150 cities on Saturday.
Clashes between Iranian protesters and security forces have rocked cities across the country for 16 nights in a row, first erupting in the western regions home to Iran's Kurdish minority, where Amini is from. Iran's leading ultra-conservative daily Kayhan, whose editor-in-chief was appointed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, says that "rioters" and "thugs", some of whom threw Molotov cocktails, attacked the newspaper's Tehran headquarters on Saturday.
IHR director Mahmud Amiri-Moghadam called on the international community to take immediate steps against the Islamic Republic to stop the killings of Iranian protesters, stressing that it constitutes a "crime against humanity."
According to IHR data, at least 92 protesters have been killed so far at rallies organized in support of Mahsa Amina. The organization is still working on estimating the number of dead despite frequent internet outages and blocking of WhatsApp, Instagram, and other internet services.
London-based Amnesty International earlier announced that it could confirm information about 53 people killed, after Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported last week that "around 60" people had died.
While Tehran is struggling with unrest in the southeast of the country, on Friday in Zahedan, the capital of the province of Sistan-Baluchistan, the poorest province in the country, five members of the Revolutionary Guard were killed in clashes.
In the past, there have been frequent conflicts in that region with insurgents from the Baluchi ethnic minority, extremists from Sunni Muslim groups, and with drug smugglers. But a Sunni Muslim preacher, Molavi Abdol Hamid, announced on his website on Wednesday that the local "community is boiling" over the release of information that a local policeman allegedly raped a 15-year-old girl.
The IHR has accused security forces in the majority-Shia state of "bloody suppression" of a Zahedan protest that erupted after Friday prayers over allegations that the police chief of the provincial port city of Shabahar raped a 15-year-old girl from the Sunni Baluchi minority.