Reporting by Peter Boyle
Progressive Kurdish and Iranian groups worked together to build a successful demonstration on September 25 in Sydney Town Hall square to protest the killing of Kurdish woman Jîna Mahsa Amini by Iran’s notorious ‘morality police’.
This was the second protest over this issue in Sydney, and more protests are being planned, including an action at 6pm on 28 September in Parramatta mall. Demonstrations have taken place in other cities around Australia, including Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth.
These demonstrations came after protests across Iran entered their second week after Amini’s death on 16 September.
The 22-year-old Kurdish woman died after being beaten by morality police for allegedly wearing her hijab incorrectly. Heavy-handed police interventions on the nightly protests that followed have resulted in at least 41 more deaths as of Monday.
The rally in Sydney heard speakers from the Kurdish and Iranian community as well as Greens local councillor Koby Shetty, Peter Murphy from Australian Supporters of Democracy in Iran, Maysoon Enilgoumi from the Sudanese community, Reverend Bill Crews and Rachel Evans from Socialist Alliance.
In her moving speech Enilgoumi explained this was not just an issue for women in Iran:
“Let’s call it what it is: This is a blueprint for the rise of the right around the world. This is not some issue of brown people in a desert far away under an Islamic regime. This goes to the heart of every authoritarian regime be it in Iran, Europe, Brazil or Sudan.”
Gulê Rose, the co-chair of the Federation of Democratic Kurdish Society – Australia, saluted the free women’s revolt and resistance sweeping Iran and Rojhilat (eastern Kurdistan occupied by Iran) and called on the Australian government to condemn Amini’s murder in the strongest terms. The United Nations should conduct an investigation into her death, she added.
Meanwhile, the Iranian and Kurdish protesters have continued to attract support from around the world, with one protest in Malaysia drawing a crowd to the Iranian embassy in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday.