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36 dead in Iran protests over death of young woman: NGO MIGMG News

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Paris (AFP) – At least 36 people have been killed in an Iranian crackdown on protests over the killing of Kurdish woman, Mahsa Amini, in police custody, a New York-based rights group said.

Amini, 22, died last week after she was arrested by the Islamic Republic’s morality police for allegedly “inappropriately” wearing a headscarf, and news of her death sparked widespread outrage.

The official death toll rose to at least 17 on Thursday, including five security personnel, but the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran said its sources put the figure much higher.

“On the seventh day of #IranProtest, officials have acknowledged at least 17 deaths with 36 independent sources saying,” the Commonwealth Human Rights Organization said in a tweet on Twitter late Thursday.

“Expect the number to rise. World leaders must pressure Iranian officials to allow protest without the use of lethal force.”

Since Amini’s death was announced on September 16, three days after her arrest in Tehran by Iran’s morality police, protests have spread to most major urban centers in Iran, including the capital as well as Isfahan, Mashhad, Rasht and Saqez.

“The government responded with live ammunition, shotguns and tear gas, according to videos circulating on social media that also showed protesters bleeding profusely,” the Commonwealth Human Rights Organization said in a statement.

Unprecedented photos showed protesters defacing or burning pictures of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and the late commander of the Revolutionary Guards, Qassem Soleimani.

In response, security forces fired on the crowds with birdshot and metal cartridges, and deployed tear gas and water cannons, according to Amnesty International and other rights groups.

The official Iranian news agency (IRNA) said the demonstrators threw stones at them, set police cars on fire and chanted anti-government slogans.

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