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Politics

Day 17: More Arrests of Iran Protesters Including Melika Gharagozlu

October 3, 2022
IranWire
4 min read
The seventeenth day of widespread protests in Iran continued the familiar pattern of protests, arrests and detentions. Large numbers of students were detained
The seventeenth day of widespread protests in Iran continued the familiar pattern of protests, arrests and detentions. Large numbers of students were detained
Lawyer Mohammad Ali Kamfirouzi announced that Melika Gharagozlu, a 22-year-old journalism student at Allameh Tabatabai University, had been arrested
Lawyer Mohammad Ali Kamfirouzi announced that Melika Gharagozlu, a 22-year-old journalism student at Allameh Tabatabai University, had been arrested

The seventeenth day of widespread protests in Iran continued the familiar pattern of protests, arrests and detentions. Large numbers of students were detained.

Melika Gharagozlu arrested

Lawyer Mohammad Ali Kamfirouzi announced that Melika Gharagozlu, a 22-year-old journalism student at Allameh Tabatabai University, had been arrested.

On Twitter he said that 10 male officers and one female officer had stormed her home on Saturday evening.

In the only contact she has had with her mother, Gharagozlu said she had been transferred to Ward 209 of Evin Prison.

Bahareh Hedayat arrested

Security agents raided Sharif University of Technology during the evening of Sunday, but it was not until the morning of Monday that the identity of those arrested was revealed.

They included Bahareh Hedayat, a student activist and former political prisoner. Hedayat was previously sentenced to four years in prison for participating in a rally protesting the shooting down of a Ukrainian passenger plane, but this new arrest is unrelated to her previous sentence.

According to IranWire sources, security officers had been waiting around Hedayat’s home since the previous day waiting to arrest her. She was finally arrested when officers raided her friend's house on Monday morning.

The identity of other students arrested by the security forces has been confirmed.

The Students' Union Councils announced the arrest of Seyed Ali Hashemian, a master's student of social sciences at Allameh Tabataba’i University. Its Telegram channel reported he had been arrested on Sunday at the Faculty of Social Sciences of Tehran University. According to eyewitnesses, university security guards locked him in the guards' room and then handed him over to security forces. Hashemian suffers from epilepsy and a lack of access to medicine during his detention could put his health and life in danger.

Ali Mansouri is another student at Tehran University who was arrested by university guards during the rally on October 2 and handed over to security agencies.

Sepideh Navabi, a management student of Kharazmi University, was also arrested by security forces, but there is no information about the place of his arrest and the institution that arrested him.

Sirvan Soleimani, Kian Sadraei and Masoud Niazi, all three law students of Kharazmi University, were arrested by the security police on the evening of October 2 and taken to an unknown location.

On the same evening, three chemistry students – Shian Moghadam, Mahsa Dastmalchi and Reza Derakhshan – were arrested during a raid on Sharif University of Technology.

Parham Davoudi, a mining engineering student at Tehran University; Mohammad Reza Rajabi, a student of molecular cell biology at Islamic Azad University; and Shahriar Morabi, a computer engineering student at Shahid Beheshti University, were among  others arrested whose identities have been verified by student activists.

Seyed Vahid Mousavi, a trade union activist and former student of Shiraz University, who had withdrawn from his studies last year in protest at the oppressive procedures in Shiraz University, was another of those arrested on Saturday. Security forces raided his house and detained him despite his poor physical condition and his need to take medication under the supervision of a doctor. His continued detention endangers his health.

Seyed Mostafa Madani, a multimedia student of Tabriz University of Islamic Arts, was also arrested by special forces during the gatherings in Kianpars, Ahvaz, but there is no information about the arresting institution and his whereabouts.

Protest death toll rises

According to the latest report from the Iranian Human Rights Organization, published on Sunday, the number killed in protests across Iran has now reached 133.

Condemning the severe repression of protesters and especially the killing of protesting citizens in Zahedan, the organization said that it had independently confirmed the identity of 92 of the dead. The other 41 names – of those who died when security forces in Zahedan opened fire on protestors – were published by the Baluch Activists’ Campaign, which monitors human rights in the south-eastern province of Sistan and Baluchestan.

During the last three weeks, Iranian citizens have taken to the streets in many cities, protesting the killing of Mahsa (Gina) Amini, who died in hospital three days after she was forcibly arrested by the morality police for failing to wear her hijab properly.

The public protests have been met with widespread repression by the authorities.

The protests in the provincial capital Zahedan started after Friday prayers on September 30, following the rape of a 15-year-old Baluch girl. Local people accused a police commander of the crime. The Baluch Activists’ Campaign said that 197 people had been injured, of which "160 people were shot with bullets and the rest with plastic bullets."

Official media quoted by the Governor of gave the number of dead as 19 with 20 others injured.

Websites close to the security institutions published a video of the alleged confession of one of the Baluch citizens arrested during the Zahedan protests. The Iranian Human Rights Organization says that these confessions seem to have been obtained under pressure.

In the past days, several videos of the confessions of those arrested during the recent protests in different cities have been broadcast by media affiliated with, or close to, the government.

Mahmoud Amiri Moghadam, director of the Iran Human Rights Organization, called the killing of protesters, especially in Zahedan, "an example of a crime against humanity" and stressed: "The international community is obliged to pursue this crime and prevent the occurrence of new crimes at the hands of the Islamic Republic."

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