iran protests

Swiss police fire rubber bullets to disperse anti-Iranian protests

Officers said two demonstrators who climbed over the fence at the Iranian Embassy in Bern were detained.

LAST UPDATE | Oct 2nd 2022, 12:25 PM

SWISS POLICE USED rubber bullets to disperse protesters in front of the Iranian Embassy in Bern after two men climbed over the compound’s fence and pulled down the Iranian flag in the yard.

Police said nobody was injured in the incident late on Saturday and that the “large crowd” of demonstrators was dispersed after the use of rubber bullets.

The two protesters who entered the embassy’s premises were detained, according to officers in the Swiss capital.

Police said they used rubber bullets after several other protesters at the unauthorised demonstration tried to follow the two men who had first entered the embassy’s yard and also attempted to access the premises.

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It was not immediately clear if more protesters were detained.

Thousands of Iranians have taken to the streets over the last two weeks in protests over the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman who had been detained by the morality police in the capital, Tehran, for allegedly wearing her mandatory Islamic headscarf too loosely.

At least 92 people have been killed nationwide in the crackdown on two weeks of protests.

And at least 41 people were separately killed by the Iranian security forces in clashes that erupted last week in the city of Zahedan in the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchistan, it said.

“The killing of protesters in Iran, especially in Zahedan, amounts to crimes against humanity,” said IHR director Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam.

“The international community has a duty to investigate this crime and prevent further crimes from being committed by the Islamic Republic.”

Its previous toll had said 83 people were confirmed to have been killed in the protests that have shaken Iran since the death of Amini, amid continued severe disruptions to the Internet.

But in what Norway-based Iran Human Rights (IHR) described as “Zahedan’s bloody Friday”, the NGO also accused the security forces of “bloodily repressing” a protest that erupted on Friday after prayers in the city.

Accounts posted on social media at the time had spoken of dozens of dead in Zahedan on Friday while images had shown overwhelmed hospitals and bloodied corpses. Some reports have said protesters sought to take control of certain streets but this is not possible to confirm.

Activists have over the last months complained that Baluch convicts were being executed in disproportionate numbers as hangings surged in the Islamic Republic.

Iran says five members of the Revolutionary Guards were killed in Zahedan in what official media described as a “terrorist incident”. State media said on Saturday that 19 people had been killed in total.

Outside Iran, thousands of protesters have also staged demonstrations in European countries and elsewhere over Ms Amini’s death. They have also expressed anger over the treatment of women and wider repression in the Islamic Republic.

Additional reporting from AFP

Press Association
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