Sixteen UN-appointed independent human rights experts Friday urged Iranian authorities to prohibit indicting people with charges punishable by death for participating in peaceful protests over the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. Since Amini’s death in a Tehran hospital on September 16, protests have occurred in major cities throughout the country.
On September 13, Mahsa Amini was arrested and violently beaten in a police van in Tehran by Iran’s morality police for not complying with discriminatory compulsory veiling laws. After the arrest, within hours, she was taken to a Kasra hospital in a coma, and three days later, Mahsa was declared dead. Amini’s death in custody sparked nationwide protests in Iran. Iranian authorities responded to the protests with unlawful force, including the use of live ammunition, killing dozens of people and injuring hundreds of others.
Since September 16, thousands of peaceful protesters have been arrested, including many women, children, youth and approximately 51 journalists. On September 22, Iranian authorities restricted internet access throughout the county in the wake of ongoing protests.
On October 29 the Islamic Revolution Court in Tehran province charged eight people with crimes carrying the death penalty, namely “waging war against God” or “moharebeh” and “corruption on earth.” Thereafter, the Tehran prosecutor announced that around 1,000 indictments had been issued in connection with recent “riots” in the province and that public trials were scheduled for a number of people “in the coming days.”