Female students tell Iranian president to ‘get out of the way’ as unrest heats up, activists say

Female students tell Iranian president to 'get out of the way' as unrest heats up, activists say
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DUBAI, Oct 8 (Reuters) – Female students in Tehran chanted “get lost” as Iranian President Ibrahim Raisi visited their university campus on Saturday and condemned protesters angry over the death of a young woman in prison.

As the nationwide demonstrations entered their fourth week, Raisi spoke to teachers and students at Tehran’s Alzahra University and recited a poem likening the “rioters” to flies.

“They think they can achieve their evil goals in universities,” state television said. Unbeknownst to them, our students and teachers are vigilant and will not allow the enemy to realize their evil goals.

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In a video posted on Twitter by the activist website 1500tasvir, female students chanted slogans of “The Chief is gone” and “The mullahs are gone” when the president visited their campus.

Iran’s state coroner’s report has denied that 22-year-old Mahsa Ami died from blows to the head and limbs while in moral police custody and linked her death to pre-existing medical conditions, state media said on Friday.

Iranian Kurd Amini was arrested in Tehran in September. 13 for wearing “inappropriate clothing” and died three days later.

His death sparked nationwide protests, the biggest challenge to Iran’s clerical leaders in recent years.

As angry crowds demanded the ouster of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, women took off their veils in protest against the clerical rule.

The government has framed the protests as a plot by Iran’s enemies, including the United States, and has blamed armed opposition for the violence, which has reportedly killed at least 20 members of the security forces.

Rights groups say there are more than 185 people were killedHundreds were injured and thousands arrested by the security forces who opposed the protests.

Security forces opened fire and fired tear gas at protesters in the Kurdish towns of Sanandaj and Saghez after calling for mass demonstrations on Saturday, according to the Iranian human rights group Hengaw.

A man died in his car in Sanandaj, the capital of northwestern Kurdistan province, and a woman said she was shot by security forces after honking her horn in protest.

But a senior police official reiterated his claim that security forces did not use live bullets and that the man was killed by “counter-revolutionaries” (armed opponents), state news agency IRNA reported.

A video shared on social networks shows a young woman lying unconscious on the ground after being shot in the northeastern city of Mashhad. Protesters gathered around him to help.

The Norway-based Iran Human Rights group said on its website that at least 185 people, including at least 19 children, had been killed in the protests. According to information, the most cases of murder were recorded in the province of Sistan-Baluchistan, where unrest reigns, half of the deaths were recorded.


After the weekly meeting, President Raisi and the head of Iran’s judicial system and the speaker of the parliament called for unity.

“Currently, Iranian society needs the unity of all sections, regardless of language, religion and ethnicity, to eliminate the hostility and division spread by anti-Iranians,” they said in a statement released by the state media.

A video circulating on social media shows protesters marching in the northern city of Babol, and several reports show security forces surrounding students demonstrating on a university campus.

Hengaw also carried a video of emergency workers trying to resuscitate a man, and said a protester died after being shot in the stomach by security forces in Sanandaj. Reuters could not verify the video.

Hengaw reports that one of the schools in the square of Saghez city was filled with girls chanting “woman, life, freedom” slogans.

The widely followed 1500tasvir Twitter account also reported shooting at protesters in two northwestern Kurdish towns.

A university student who went to join the protests in Tehran said he was not afraid of being arrested or even killed.

“They can kill us, they can arrest us, but we will not remain silent. Our classmates are in prison. How can we remain silent?” The student, who asked to remain anonymous, told Reuters.

Iran’s semi-official news agencies downplayed the protests in the capital, Tehran. The ISNA agency reported “limited” demonstrations in about 10 districts of the city, with many market traders closing their shops for fear of damage caused by the riots, denying it was a strike.

Internet watchdog NetBlocks said the internet was cut again in Sanadaj amid protests in the Kurdish regions in the northwest. “Internet continues to be disrupted regionally in #Iran’s #Zahidan, Sistan and Baluchistan provinces,” the group said on Friday, “seven days after increased violence and civilian killings by security forces.”

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Report by Dubai Newsroom; Written by Michael Georgy, edited by Ros Russell and Nick Macfie

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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