Ongoing Iran Uprising arrives at World Cup.. State has killed 400+ protestors.. Team refuses to sing Anthem.

Al Jazeera News By Hafsa Adil 22 Nov 22 illustrations added via thefreeonline

Iran football fans raise their voices in support of those protesting in their country.

Doha, Qatar – Chants of “Say her name, Mahsa Amini,” reverberated among protesters outside Khalifa International Stadium ahead of Iran’s first match of the World Cup 2022 against England.

A few dozen men, women and children were seen on Monday wearing t-shirts saying “Zan, Zindagi, Azadi” (women, life, freedom), a famous chant from the protests in Iran.

Hengaw Human Rights @HengawO Hengaw_Org

Protests have been taking place across Iran since mid-September after the death in custody of Amini, a 22-year-old woman from Iran’s Kurdistan province. Amini was arrested by the country’s morality police in the capital Tehran for allegedly not adhering to Iran’s dress code for women.

‘Say her name, Mahsa Amini’:

In the past few days, protests have been most intense in northwestern Kurdish-majority provinces, with videos continuing to come out from several cities, including Mahabad, Bukan and Piranshahr in West Azerbaijan and Javanrud in Kermanshah.

“My people in Iran are under a lot of pressure and are being killed by the regime, so we want to use this opportunity to raise a voice for them,” Mahmoud Izadi, one of the protest organisers, told Al Jazeera in Qatar’s capital Doha.

The protests started off with claps and chants of “Iran” but soon turned political as a charged-up crowd started waving banners with Amini’s picture on them.

Dressed all in black to register his protest, Izadi said the demonstrators want the world to pay attention to the situation in Iran and are using the World Cup as a platform because their voices are being crushed in their home country.

Once those protesters went quiet, a group of men in Iran football shirts began shouting in support of the team.

“People who are dancing and cheering for Iran have been sent here by the regime to paint a different picture,” Izadi said, adding that he was not there to support the team “because they are not supporting our people”.

Fans gather outside Khalifa International Stadium [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]

The most vocal protesters seem to be those who have travelled to Qatar from places other than Iran.

Others, who seemed to be based in Iran or will travel there, were simply clapping from the sidelines and steered away from any attention.

A few families and women turned down requests for a comment, saying they wanted to stay away from trouble back home.

Hasti, an Iranian-born American here to watch Iran’s matches, said she does not think a sports tournament is necessarily the best place to register a protest but there are not many options left for the people of her country.

“We are going to use whatever platform we can get to raise the issue and this may not help the people in Iran directly but it will help show the world what’s happening there.”

Iran attacks positions in northern Iraq targeting Kurdish groups

By Maziar Motamedi On 21 Nov 2022 by via thefreeonline

Iranians hold up posters in support of anti-government protests outside a stadium in Qatar
Iran supporters hold up signs in support of anti-government protesters in Iran while attending the World Cup in Qatar [Hamad I Mohammed/Reuters]

Iran says Kurdish separatist groups based in northern Iraq are supporting Kurdish-majority provinces in western Iran as anti-government protests continue.

Tehran, Iran – Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has attacked positions in northern Iraq held by Kurdish groups, as anti-government protests continue in Iran’s Kurdish-majority western regions and elsewhere.

The elite force’s ground division confirmed early on Monday that it had hit three areas in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq with missiles and drones and inflicted “heavy damage” on two Kurdish groups that Tehran considers to be “terrorist” organisations.

Videos claim to show home of Iran’s late leader Khomeini on fire

The semi-official Tasnim website, which is close to the IRGC, cited local sources as saying 26 members of Komala and the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan groups were killed in the attacks.

The United States Central Command condemned the cross-border attacks in a statement, saying they violated Iraqi sovereignty and “jeopardise the hard-fought security and stability of Iraq and the Middle East”.

The IRGC has attacked positions it said were held by the groups several times since the beginning of protests in Iran more than two months ago, as it maintains they smuggle weapons into the country and carry out operations to destabilise it.

The latest attack comes days after the IRGC’s Quds Force commander, Esmail Qaani, travelled to Iraq for high-level meetings, and after repeated warnings by Tehran to Baghdad to disarm or relocate the groups.

Protests erupted across Iran in mid-September after the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman from Saqqez in Iran’s Kurdistan province, who was arrested by the country’s morality police in Tehran for allegedly not adhering to the country’s dress code for women.

In the past few days, protests have been most intense in northwestern Kurdish-majority provinces, with videos continuing to come out from several cities, including Mahabad, Bukan and Piranshahr in West Azerbaijan and Javanrud in Kermanshah.

In Mahabad, several videos circulating online, which could not be independently verified, showed a convoy of heavy armoured vehicles reportedly deployed by Iranian authorities, while the sound of gunfire could be heard in some videos and others showed helicopters flying overhead.

The IRGC confirmed in a statement on Sunday that it is “strengthening” its forces in the country’s northwestern regions, in what it said is a response to activities by “armed thugs and separatist terrorists”.

Foreign-based human rights organisations have reported that several people were shot dead by security forces in protests on Sunday night.

Iranian authorities have consistently denied that security forces use live bullets.

Authorities have not provided an official tally of the total number of people killed since the start of the protests, but have said that more than 50 members of the security forces have been killed during “riots” and operations by foreign-backed “terrorists”.

Rights groups say more than 400 people have been killed, including about 60 children.

Tehran has accused foreign powers, including France, Germany, Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and the United States of being behind the country’s unrest.

It has also responded to sanctions by several Western governments with sanctions of its own.

Footballer supports protests

During a press conference on Sunday, XXXXXX appeared to implicitly voice support for the protests, expressing condolences to families who have lost loved ones.

He also began his comments by saying “in the name of the God of rainbows”, a reference to a sentence used in a video by Kian Pirfalak, a nine-year-old boy who was killed after he was shot in the town of Izeh, in Khuzestan province, last week.

Pirfalak’s mother blamed security forces during his funeral, but authorities said “terrorists” riding a motorcycle killed him and six others.

XXXXXXX and XXXXXXXXX two former players for the national football team and current members of the backroom staff at the leading Iranian club Persepolis, were punished on Sunday for publishing posts in support of the protests on their social media accounts.

XXXX was fined 20 percent of his salary, while XXXXXXwas fined 15 percent.

Two actresses,XXXX and XXXXX, were also arrested on Sunday.

They had filmed themselves without a head covering in support of the protests.

Iran on Sunday issued a sixth protest-linked death sentence, saying the person sentenced had blocked a major street in Tehran, fought with Basij paramilitary forces using a weapon, and “terrorised” civilians.

Source: Al Jazeera

Author: thefreeonline

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