Peaceful Protest in Bokan Against Acid Attacks: Six People Arrested

Kurdpa: Following the acid attacks on three women in Bokan, a peaceful protest against the attacks was organized, leading to the arrests of six people by plainclothes security forces.

Kurdpa has learned that on Thursday evening, a number of civil rights activists staged a demonstration in and around Bokan’s Farmandai Boulevard against the recent acid attacks on women in the city.

The undercover security and intelligence agents tried preventing the demonstration; however, a large crowd joined the protest, carrying placards denouncing the attacks.

The gathering was short lived as security agencies dispersed the crowd and apprehended seven of the protesters, four men and three women, among them a university instructor.

Kurdpa further learned that Saeed Hassanzadeh, an instructor, was one of those arrested. Nicknamed Shorish (Revolution in Kurdish), he was arrested while reading aloud a message in solidarity with the victims and against the acid attacks.

Kurdpa could not confirm the identity of the other individuals arrested; however eye-witnesses told Kurdpa that some of them were arrested during the scuffle with the plainclothes security agents.

On Tuesday night in simultaneous attacks, three women became the targets of vicious acid attacks in the city of Bokan at a busy intersection.

In 2014, a series of acid attacks that took place in the major cities of Isfahan and Tehran sparked horror and outrage. The victims reportedly stated those responsible for the attack were the Basijis and the morality police.

Reports indicated those responsible for the attack were later identified and were not charged or arrested.

In the Islamic Republic of Iran, volunteer basij militia operate as the self-appointed guardians of Islamic behaviour with full support of the powerful Revolutionary Guards and Moral Police. It is inevitable that suspicions for these acid attacks on innocent women fall on such religious vigilante groups.

Clerics and security officials often publicly call for stricter enforcement measures to restrict inappropriately worn headscarves by women, which often result in mass arrests, harassments and public humiliations.

The 2014 attacks in central Iran coincided with the passage of a new parliamentary bill that allowed private citizens to enforce morality laws.

Writing by Kurdpa Staff Writers and editing by Sharmin Hassaniani.

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