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Protests in Iran: Canada blames the regime for the death of a womanNews WAALI

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Canada’s foreign minister blames the Iranian regime for the recent death of a woman who was jailed for allegedly violating the country’s compulsory veil laws.

In a statement Friday, Melanie Joly said, “Canada strongly condemns the reprehensible detention and killing of Mahsa Amini.”

The Iranian moral police arrested Amini last week in the capital, Tehran, for allegedly wearing her Islamic headscarf too loosely. Iranian women are required to wear hijabs in public.

Amini later died in custody and while police say the 22-year-old suffered a heart attack and was not abused, her family have disputed that statement.

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Iranians across the country have since taken to the streets to protest and confront police, with videos on social media showing women removing their veils and burning them. Some women also cut their hair in protest.

“Her death was a direct result of Iran’s systematic and continued harassment and oppression of women,” Joly said in her statement. “We stand in solidarity with the relatives of Mahsa Amini and the Iranian women.”

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Joly also condemned the “violent crackdown” against civilians, saying, “Canada is deeply concerned about the possible further crackdowns and use of additional force against civilians.”

Iran’s state television said Thursday that 26 protesters and police officers have been killed since protests began last Saturday after Amini’s funeral, though it’s unclear how authorities arrived at those numbers.

The Associated Press reports that at least 11 people were killed, based on statements from state and semi-official media.

In response to the protests, Iran has shut down its internet and platforms such as Instagram and WhatsApp. Anti-government protests were also met with pro-government rallies on Friday.

“We call on Iran to halt the escalation of tensions and refrain from further acts of violence against its own people. We urge Iran to meaningfully address the grievances of all its citizens without discrimination and to protect their right to protest peacefully,” Joly said.

“Women’s rights are human rights. We salute the courage of Iranian women who are peacefully protesting and together we send a clear message to the regime: you must end all forms of persecution and violence against women.”

CONSERVATIVES, NDP RESPONSE TO PROTESTS

The House of Commons unanimously approved the motion on Wednesday expresses his condolences after Amini’s death.

The federal government is officially advising Canadians to avoid all travel to Iran and has recently warned against visiting areas where demonstrations are taking place.


In a statement on Twitter On Wednesday, newly appointed Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre called Amini’s killing “another heartbreaking act of brutality and murder by the Iranian dictatorship against the women of Iran.”

“Trudeau must finally stand with the Iranian people who are fighting for their freedom and list the IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) as a terrorist group,” he added.

The IRGC is a branch of the Iranian Armed Forces established in 1979 after the Iranian Revolution.

The United States listed the IRGC as a designated foreign terrorist organization in 2019.

Canada, meanwhile, has labeled the IRGC’s secretive Qods Force a terrorist entity, but has not done so for the corps itself.

Recent calls for Canada to designate the IRGC as a terrorist group came after Iranian forces shot down Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 on January 8, 2020, killing all 176 people on board, including 55 Canadian citizens and 30 permanent residents Resident. More than 100 passengers had connections to Canada.

In June 2018, the House also approved a conservative movement to list the IRGC as a terrorist entity, among other things.

“Her name is #MahsaAmini. She was 22 years old. She was murdered. She was beaten and murdered by the Iranian regime. The House of Commons voted to declare the IRGC a terrorist organization in 2018. It has to happen now,” Conservative MP Melissa Lantsman said tweeted on Wednesday.

In a statement Thursday, NDP foreign affairs critic Heather McPherson commended the women and men of Iran who are “taking bold steps to fight for their rights and freedoms,” adding that the party supports the call for the UN supported after an independent investigation into Amini’s death.

“Mahsa’s tragic death is a reminder that gender-based violence is still a reality for many women and girls around the world and that Canadians are rightly concerned about the ongoing situation in Iran,” McPherson said.

“It is disturbing to hear the reports of near-total internet blackouts as the Iranian government tries to quell protests.”

A crackdown on protesters in 2019, sparked by soaring gas prices, resulted in an estimated hundreds of deaths, with a Reuters report putting the death toll as high as 1,500.


With files from The Associated Press, CNN and Reuters

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