UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. Dubai: An influential and revered Iranian cleric has urged tough and immediate retaliatory action on Friday against protesters who have taken to the streets enraged by the death of a young Kurdish woman in police custody over the moral issue of appropriate clothing.
These protesters have actively called for the chastisement of these religious clerics for their omnipresent control over a flawed set of moral codes.
“Our security is our distinctive privilege. “The Iranian people demand the harshest punishment for these barbaric rioters,” said Imam Mohammad Javad Haj Ali Akbari, a leader of prayers that are held on Fridays in Tehran before a large gathering.
“The people want the death of Mahsa Amini to be cleared up… so that enemies cannot take advantage of this incident.”
Amini, a young 22-year-old Kurdish woman from the Iranian town of Saqez, was detained by Iran’s infamous morality police this month for “unsuitable attire.”
Her death sparked the first big show of opposition and fiery agitation of Iranian as well as international women in general, against strict codes of clothing as an indicator of moral virtue.
These female-centric protests are one of the biggest inner rebellions against the government since a rise in gasoline prices in 2019.
Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said in a statement on Friday that the government crackdown on demonstrations has so far resulted in the deaths of at least 52 people, with hundreds injured.
Amnesty said it had obtained a copy of an official document that records that the General Headquarters of Armed Forces issued an order to commanders in all provinces to “severely confront” protesters described as “troublemakers and anti-revolutionaries.”
Despite the growing death toll and a fierce crackdown on these protesters by authorities, videos circulating on Twitter showed demonstrators calling for the fall of the clerical establishment.
Amini’s unjustifiable death and the subsequent sanctions on protesters exercising their basic human right to protest have drawn international criticism of Iran.
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said on Wednesday that the death of Amini had “saddened” everyone in the Islamic Republic, but warned that “chaos” would not be accepted amid spreading protests.