Teenage girls also remove the veil and defy repression

In the rallies that have shaken Iran since the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurd arrested by the morality police, we come across all kinds of faces. The wrinkled, the determined, the suntanned, the unveiled, and a lot of young people. Students gathered last weekend before being confronted by riot police who cornered them in an underground car park at the Sharif University of Technology in Tehran before arresting them. Since then, schoolgirls across the country have taken over, adopting a variety of tactics, including removing their veils and shouting anti-conservative slogans.

In a verified video, young girls, their heads unveiled, chant “Death to the dictator”, in reference to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, Monday in a school in Karaj, west of Tehran. Another group of girls chants “Woman, life, freedom” while parading in a street. “These are truly extraordinary scenes. If these protests are to lead to anything, it will be thanks to the schoolgirls,” said Esfandyar Batmanghelidj, from the information and analysis site Bourse & Bazaar.

Nika Shahkarami, 16, died after protest

Other videos posted online show schoolgirls leaving classrooms to march through various locations around the city in flash protests to avoid detection. Iranian Attorney General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri admitted on Wednesday that young people were involved in the protests, denouncing the influence of social networks. “The fact that 16-year-olds are present in these events is provoked by social networks, they are trapped,” he said, as the regime castigates demonstrations led by Israel and the United States.

Education Minister Yousef Nouri, quoted by the IRNA agency, told him that “the enemy’s attacks were targeting universities as well as the worlds of science and education”. On Wednesday, the NGO Human Rights Watch said it had verified 16 videos posted on social media, which it said showed “police and other security forces using excessive and lethal force against protesters” in Tehran and other cities. ‘other cities. Social networks had reported during the day that the teenager Nika Shahkarami had been killed by the security forces during the demonstrations.

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