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Iran: Cities Witness Escalating Protests Continuing Into The Night – OpEd

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Iran’s nationwide uprising is marking its 47th day on Tuesday after college students took to the streets in dozens of universities across the country the day before. Students of all ages are relentlessly pursuing their protests against the regime’s escalating crackdown through their official security forces and plainclothes agents. Many reports indicate the regime has dispatched its Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) members in plainclothes to quell any anti-regime protests, only to see the Iranian people standing their ground and continuing their rallies. 

People in the cities of Tehran, Tabriz, Arak, and others were protesting well into the night and targeting regime-associated buildings with Molotov cocktails. Those chanting slogans were directly targeting the regime’s senior ranks and calling for regime change in Iran by the people of Iran. All the while, strong criticism is being directed at both the IRGC and the paramilitary Basij Force. “Death to the dictator!” and “Death to Khamenei!” referring to regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, and “Death to the oppressor! Be it the Shah or [Khamenei]!” are being heard in more cities throughout Iran. 

Protests in Iran have to this day, expanded to at least 213 cities. Over 450 people have been killed, and more than 25,000 are arrested by the regime’s forces, according to sources of the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK).  The PMOI/MEK has published the names of 307 killed protesters. 

On Tuesday morning, students of two universities in Tehran held rallies protesting the recent heavy crackdown measures imposed by authorities on their campuses, including arresting dozens of college students and banning many from entering their campuses. Students of National and Amir Kabir universities were the first to start today’s anti-regime rallies. 

Similar rallies have been held at Tehran’s Alzahra University and other campuses around the capital, Yazd University, the Islamic Azad University of Karaj in Gohardasht, and the Isfahan University of Technology, among others. High school students are also playing their part in today’s anti-regime rallies, including those in the restive cities of Sanandaj, Marivan,and Tehran. 

Students in several universities across the country are also holding rallies and refusing to attend their classes, protesting the regime’s escalating crackdown measures against their classmates, including suspensions of many students in different universities. Such gatherings have witnessed the protesting students chanting different slogans, including:
“Jailed college students must be released!” “Freedom! Freedom! Freedom!” 

Families of recently apprehended protesters in Tehran rallied outside Evin Prison on Monday morning, demanding information about their loved ones. These worried families received no answers from authorities or regime officials, only to be told yet again to come back another day. The lives of those apprehended are in grave danger as many protesters in the past eight weeks have lost their lives while in custody and under torture. 

Locals in Marivan were on strike today in solidarity with the nationwide uprising. Locals in this city of Kurdistan Province were also seen establishing roadblocks with fires and taking control of their streets. 

In Tehran, locals and merchants in the Aladdin shopping center began protesting and closing their shops as protests escalated. Regime security forces deployed to the scene began firing tear gas into the complex. 

In Dehloran of Ilam Province, the regime’s oppressive security officers are opening fire on protesters who are standing their ground. There is an intense flashpoint in the city of Divandarreh where locals are confronting the regime’s security forces, according to activists. Residents of Bukan in northwest Iran are in the streets, establishing roadblocks and taking control of their districts. 

In the town of Rumeshkan in Lorestan Province, western Iran, protesters threw Molotov cocktails at the office of the local Friday prayer imam, who is also the representative of regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. 

On Monday, college students in at least 35 universities across Iran, including in the cities of Tehran, Mashhad, Tabriz, Shiraz, and others, launched new protest rallies. These protesters are once again defying any and all warnings issued by regime officials despite the heavy crackdown witnessed in the past few days.  Similar rallies by college students were seen in Sirjan, Urmia, Shahrood, Sanandaj, Islamshahr, Babol, Karaj, and Sabzevar. In Marivan, high school students and locals joined the college students’ rallies. 

The cities of Arak and Tabriz were witnessing major confrontations between protesters and the regime’s oppressive security forces. Locals are in the streets in large numbers and taking control of their streets in defiance of the regime’s heavy crackdown measures. 

In Sanandaj, the capital of Kurdistan Province, locals in large numbers gathered at the grave of Sarina Saedi, a protester killed by the regime’s security forces. 

Similar ceremonies marking the 40th day of the murder of other protesters at the hands of the regime’s oppressive security forces were held in other cities where participants were seen chanting anti-regime slogans, including “Death to Khamenei!” and “Death to the dictator!”

In Marivan, locals are in the streets establishing roadblocks and taking control of their streets. There are also reports from Arak in central Iran, where local activists say protesters are engaged in clashes against the regime’s security forces. In recent reports from last night, activists say protesters in the city of Saqqez set ablaze a site in the city’s Laleh Park used by authorities to jam satellite TV signals. In Tehran, protesters in the Bagheri Town district used Molotov cocktails in launching an attack targeting a building associated to the mullahs’ regime.  

Activists in the cities of Oshnavieh and Khorramabad reported a general strike by storeowners in solidarity with the nationwide strike against the mullahs’ regime. 

Iranian opposition NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi praised the students of Iran’s universities in their continuing protests against the mullahs’ regime. “Students’ defiance at Tehran, Sharif, Al-Zahra, Khajeh Nasir, Sanandaj, Shiraz, Urmia, Shahrud, and other universities showed that Iran’s valiant children are not intimidated by the IRGC’s brutality and pay the price of freedom. Unity and perseverance guarantee advancing toward freedom,” she said. 

“The people of Iran, especially women and youths, have risen up to overthrow the regime and achieve freedom. They are fed up with the mullahs’ brutal suppression, hostility toward women, religious discrimination, and poverty,” the NCRI President-elect explained. 

In the past few days, freedom-loving Iranians and PMOI/MEK supporters have been holding gatherings in Europe, the U.S., and Canada in support of their compatriots protesting the mullahs’ dictatorship. These rallies have been held in Geneva, Vancouver, Washington, Amsterdam, Rome, Vienna, Stockholm, Frankfurt, Ottawa, and Nürnberg. 

The protests in Iran began following the death of Mahsa Amini. Mahsa (Zhina) Amini, a 22-year-old woman from the city of Saqqez in Kurdistan Province, western Iran, who traveled to Tehran with her family, was arrested on Tuesday, September 13, at the entry of Haqqani Highway by the regime’s so-called “Guidance Patrol” and transferred to the “Moral Security” agency. 

She was brutally beaten by the morality police and died of her wounds in a Tehran hospital on September 16. The event triggered protests that quickly spread across Iran and rekindled the people’s desire to overthrow the regime. 

Mahmoud Hakamian writes for PMOI/MEK, where this article was published.

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