Plainclothes security officers opened fire on a car in the city of Borujerd, Lorestan province, western Iran, killing a 20-year-old female student, Anahita Amirpour, and seriously injuring a second, the Hengaw Human Rights Organisation reported on Sunday.
The incident took place on the evening of 19 January when the officers, from the Borujerd Intelligence Department, approached a Peugeot 206 car carrying Amirpour and another student, ordering them to stop and get out of the vehicle. Eyewitnesses said the situation escalated when the students, apparently alarmed that the men were not in uniform, attempted to flee, prompting the officers to open fire.
According to the Norwegian human rights organisation, over the past two days the Iranian security services have put pressure on the families and friends of the students, urging them to withhold information about Amirpour’s death. There are also allegations that the authorities are attempting to manipulate the narrative surrounding this incident by linking it to recent explosions in Kerman, 650 miles away, potentially turning it into a perceived security issue.
This is not the first time Iranian security officers in plainclothes have killed people by firing indiscriminately at their cars.
Soha Etebari (12) met a tragic end in her family’s car when she was shot dead by the armed forces of the clerical regime on the night of 25 December 2022. The Etebari family were travelling from Bandar Abbas in Hormozgan province to Ahvaz, the capital of Khuzestan, when security forces opened fire on their car at a checkpoint in Bastak. Seriously wounded, Soha Etebari died on the way to hospital.
The untimely death of Soha Etebari 40 days after the death of Kian Pirfalak (9), who was killed in a similar incident in Izeh, Khuzestan, on 16 November 2022, during a brutal crackdown on protests in the city. The 40th day after someone’s death is particularly significant in Islam, a day of remembrance for the deceased. Kian and his family were travelling in their car when plainclothes agents and security forces in Izeh targeted them. Kian was killed instantly and his father suffered gunshot wounds.