Countries all around the world celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8 in appreciation of the multiple efforts and roles they have undertaken and are playing, and to demand the promotion of their political, economic, social and human rights; however, Iran, under the leadership of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, has had a different view, instead increasing its repression of women and silencing their voices.
Green light for violence
Observers called 2022 “the year of violations against women and their freedom” in Iran due to the repression they faced at the hands of the mullahs’ security apparatus, whether the Basij forces, the Revolutionary Guards or the police, with a “green light” from the ruling regime.
On the occasion of International Women’s Day, US President Joe Biden criticized the mullah regime in Iran for what he described as the brutal treatment of women, saying, “We see it in Iran, where the regime brutally suppresses the voices of women who bravely defend their freedom.”
Mahsa Amini case
The Iranian regime’s oppression of women was revealed in September 2022, when a 20-year-old Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, was killed by the Iranian morality police due to allegations of non-compliance with the Islamic veil dress code. Her death resulted in several protests, not only inside Iran, but outside as well.
The opponents of the Iranian regime abroad played an important role in conveying their voices to the countries of the world about what is happening regarding the rights of women, who also led protests throughout Iran, calling for the fall of the Supreme Leader’s regime. The protests continued for no less than three months until they were suppressed by the mullahs, who claimed that the “enemies of the country” were behind the exacerbation of these protests inside the country to overthrow the regime.
Poisoning female students
After the Iranian regime believed that it had put down the protests, incidents of female students beibng poisoned came to strike. Since the first incidents of poisoning 17 students at an institute for girls’ education in the city of Qom appeared on November 30, 2022, the regime has tried to deny the matter and claim that these are just rumors launched by the country’s enemies to undermine the regime by not quelling the protests. However, cases increased until more than 5,000 students were injured in 230 schools in 25 out of 31 provinces, and the protests resumed all over the country.
Dr. Masoud Ibrahim Hassan, a researcher specializing in Iranian affairs, explained that women contributed greatly to the success of the Iranian Revolution in 1979, when the regime was led by former Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and then after him Ali Khamenei, who returned the favor to with more repression and restrictions of liberties against women.
Hassan pointed out in a special statement to the Reference that the Iranian regime was betting that it had the ability and authority to suppress the protests, which actually happened when it put down the Mahsa Amini protests, and instead of the regime being the shield of protection for the girls who were poisoned, there are reports proving its involvement in the incidents, which is not surprising, as the mullah regime’s prisons are full of girls of all ages and groups.
He concluded that the mullah regime does not respect any rights of women or its opponents, as repression and restrictions of freedoms continue, and Tehran is currently betting on women as the main key to the continuity of protests against the dictatorial regime.
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