Iran says the United States is trying to exploit the unrest to weaken the country

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  • Calls for teachers and students to strike
  • Iran says it will respond to US action
  • Germany summons the Iranian ambassador

DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran faced international criticism on Monday over the death of a woman in police custody, sparking protests across the country after Tehran accused the United States of using unrest to try to destabilize the country.

Iran has cracked down on the largest demonstrations since 2019, which erupted after the killing of a 22-year-old Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, on September 16, after she was detained by morality police imposing the Islamic Republic’s strict restrictions on women’s clothing. The case was met with widespread condemnation.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Monday that Canada will impose sanctions on those responsible for the killing of Amini, including Iran’s morality police unit and leadership.

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“We’ve seen Iran disregard human rights over and over again, and now we’re seeing it with the death of Mahsa Amini and the suppression of protests,” Trudeau told reporters in Ottawa.

Iran has said the United States supports the rioters and seeks to destabilize the Islamic Republic.

“Washington is always trying to weaken Iran’s stability and security, even though it has not succeeded,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani told Noor News, which is affiliated with a high-ranking security agency, in a statement.

On his Instagram page, Al-Kanaani accused the leaders of the United States and some European countries of exploiting a tragic incident in support of the “rioters” and ignoring “the presence of millions in the country’s streets and squares in support of the regime.”

summoned envoy

On Monday, Germany summoned the Iranian ambassador in Berlin to urge Tehran to stop its crackdown and allow peaceful protests. Asked about the possibility of further sanctions against Tehran in response to the violence, a German Foreign Ministry spokesman said earlier that “we will consider all options” with other EU countries. Read more

Last week, the United States imposed sanctions on Iran’s morality police over allegations of abuse of Iranian women, saying it held the unit responsible for Amini’s murder.

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRNA), a collective news website, said that students of the Dental School of Tabriz University, except for the emergency department, participated in the strike on Monday and refused to participate in classes. Iranian human rights advocate.

It added that the strikes were carried out in protest of the widespread arrests of students and violent meetings with security forces at Iranian universities.

On Sunday, Iran summoned the ambassadors of Britain and Norway over what it described as interference and hostile media coverage of the unrest.

lightning call

The anti-government protests are the largest to sweep Iran since protests against fuel prices in 2019, when Reuters reported that 1,500 people were killed in a crackdown on protesters – in the deadliest wave of domestic unrest in the history of the Islamic Republic.

At least 41 people have died since Sept. 17, according to state TV.

President Ebrahim Raisi said that Iran guarantees freedom of expression and that he has ordered an investigation into Amini’s death.

The prominent Iranian Teachers’ Union, in a statement posted on social media on Sunday, called on teachers and students to organize the first national strike since the unrest began on Monday and Wednesday.

The woman played a prominent role in the protests, waving and burning her veil.

In a video circulated on social media, Javad Heydari, the sister of a man killed in anti-government demonstrations, cut her hair over his grave in defiance of the Islamic dress code in Iran. Reuters could not verify the authenticity of the video.

The state organized rallies in an attempt to defuse the crisis.

Although the demonstrations over Amini’s death pose a major challenge to the government, analysts see no immediate threat to Iran’s leaders because elite security forces have quelled protests in the past.

Iran has blamed armed Iranian Kurdish opponents for the unrest, particularly in the northwest where most of Iran’s 10 million Kurds live.

Iran’s semi-official Tasnim news agency said that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard launched an artillery and drone attack on Iranian opposition bases in the Kurdish region in northern Iraq.

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Reporting from the Dubai Newsroom. Additional reporting by Rachel Moore in Berlin and Ismail Shakeel in Ottawa; Written by Michael Georgi. Editing by Alison Williams, William MacLean and Grant McCall

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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