The family of Nika Shakrami, a 16-year-old girl who was killed by Iranian security forces during protests a year ago, has been threatened not to visit her grave on the anniversary of her death.
"If we go to our beloved Nika's grave, your mother will be arrested," Nika's sister Aida quoted unidentified individuals as telling her.
In a post on Instagram on September 19, Aida said that she was warned she could also be arrested.
Intelligence authorities finally granted permission for a mourning ceremony to take place in the city of Khorramabad, Lorestan province, on September 21, provided that it does not lead to any "violence," she said, adding that several people who planned to participate have been summoned, arrested and subjected to threats by security agencies.
On September 16, Nika Shakrami's aunt, Atash Shakrami, wrote on Instagram that roadblocks had been placed on the road to Hayat al-Gheib cemetery, where Nika is buried.
According to activist Barbad Golshiri, agents of the Islamic Republic have spray-painted Shakarami’s grave and blocked access to it.
“They have vandalized the grave, damaged the surrounding trees and defaced the memorial site with black paint. In addition, they have cordoned off all the routes leading to the site,” he wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
Shakarami went missing during anti-establishment protests in Tehran on September 20 last year. Her family was informed of her death 10 days later.
The government has desecrated the graves of other victims of the brutal crackdown on nationwide protests sparked by Mahsa Amini’s death in police custody in September 2022.
Pressure on the families of those killed has also grown steadily in recent months.
On September 18, law enforcement officers entered the neighborhood in Shahriar, outside Tehran, and tore down banners commemorating a young protester killed a year ago, according to reports circulating on social media.
The family of Erfan Khazai was warned that they would not be allowed to leave their homes on September 20, which will mark the first anniversary of the protester’s death.