International human rights groups have called for urgent global pressure on Iran to stop handing death sentences to jailed anti-government protesters and to refrain from executing any of the detainees, reported Voice of America (VOA).
Iranian courts are now issuing death sentences to those who take part in the nationwide protests. This week, five people were sentenced to execution for participating in the protests.
Amnesty International reported that Iranian authorities were seeking the death penalty for protesters in trials designed to intimidate and deter others from joining the movement.
Uprisings in the country rage on, as Thursday saw videos circulate on social media of thousands taking to the streets in the Kurdish city of Sanandaj (Sine) to join the “Jin, Jîyan, Azadî” (“Woman, Life, Freedom”) movement.
Women in Iran are leading the protests, as they strive to rid themselves of the shackles of the Islamic Republic.
This wave of protests against the Iranian regime started in mid-September with the death of a Kurdish- Iranian woman Jîna Mahsa Amini in the flush of her youth, who died in Iran’s morality police custody for allowing hair to show from beneath the compulsory hijab.
In the Kurdish majority Iranian province of Bukan on Thursday a father buried his son Mihemed Hesenzade, who died participating in the protests. The funeral speech said a lot about how critical both the plight, and drive, of women is to the Iranian protests:
“In the past, if we wanted to say that someone is very manly,
That someone was very courageous, very honourable, very conscientious,
What word did we use? Man.
We said, ‘He’s very manly.’
From now on, if a man is very ‘manly’ he must be very ‘womanly’,
Considering how the women are more courageous than the men!”
Tried translating the speech made by Mihemed Hesenzade’s father at the funeral of his son, in the city of Bokan (Bukan).
شەهید نامرن#JinaEmini #مهسا_امینی pic.twitter.com/AFbCVCR7A1
— bêstûn | بێستوون (@altvni) November 17, 2022
The grieving procession received the speech with cries of “Jin, Jiyan Azadi”, the slogan that has come to represent the 2022 uprisings, though it in fact arose years before from the feminist philosophy of the Kurdish leader Abdullah Öcalan and used in the Rojava Revolution (Kurdistan).
This is not the first time that Iranian security forces have staged a lethal crackdown on protests. There is a long history of suppressing dissent in the country, using any means necessary, from Internet blackouts to extreme violence against anyone who dared defy authority. In 2019, 1,500 people demonstrating against rising energy costs were killed under the extreme violence of the Iranian security and police forces. Those protests were dubbed “Bloody November”.
This year’s uprisings that are continuing on into November are tragically reminiscent. So far at least 304 deaths have been reported. And now, protesters in Iran are being lined up for the death penalty.