Violence against protesters Baerbock for more sanctions against Iran

Violence against protesters: Baerbock for more sanctions against Iran

Status: 10.03.2022 14:27

In view of the continued violence by Iranian forces against the protesters, Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock is calling for tougher EU sanctions. She attested to the “incredible” courage of the protest movement.

In the context of the brutal crackdown by police and militias in Iran against the protest movement, Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock advocates strengthening the current EU sanctions against the Islamic Republic. The green politician admitted in a Twitter post that it was “hard to bear” that foreign policy options were limited. “But we can amplify their voice, create publicity, accuse and sanction. And we do that.”

Faced with new reports of violence at Tehran’s Sharif University, Baerbock honored the students: “The courage of the Iranians is incredible. And the brute force of the regime is an expression of pure fear of the power of education and freedom.”

Several EU countries are apparently proposing a tightening

As Spiegel reports, the federal government, along with France, Denmark, Spain, Italy and the Czech Republic, made proposals on how sanctions could be tightened. Then it comes to penalties against 16 people, organizations and institutions. The measures can be decided at the meeting of EU foreign ministers on 16 October. Observers and experts have long criticized the fact that the sanctions in place so far primarily affect the Iranian people, but not the country’s power elites.

Suspended classes at Sharif University

After the serious unrest at Tehran’s elite university, classes are now held online only. However, students complain that it is hardly possible to participate in virtual classes due to the current internet blockage. The Iranian leadership has severely restricted access to the internet because of anti-government protests.

According to media reports, violence at Sharif University escalated last night after students protested against the government. The forces then used violence against the protesters and say they also beat up teachers. There was talk of “civil war-like” conditions on social media. They say the shots were fired. Videos shared thousands of times, whose authenticity could not initially be verified, showed a strong presence of security forces.

Khamenei: The US and Israel are to blame

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has publicly commented on the protests in the country for the first time. He accused the US and Israel of being behind this. “These riots were planned,” Khamenei told police students in Tehran. “I say clearly that these uprisings and insecurities were planned by the United States and the Zionist regime and its officials.”

Iranian state media had previously dismissed these reports as exaggerated propaganda against the system. They reported a calm situation and accused the media abroad of spreading lies.

Protests against the Islamic system

The demonstrations were sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini two weeks ago. The moral police arrested her because of her supposedly “un-Islamic” clothing. What happened to Amini after that is unclear. The woman fell into a coma and died in hospital.

Critics accuse the police of morality of using violence; the police deny it. Since the young woman’s death, thousands of people have been demonstrating across the country against the repressive stance of the government and security forces, as well as against the Islamic system.

Ayatollah Khamenei spoke of a “sad incident” that “broke our hearts”.

Support comes from many countries

Since then, there have also been protests outside of Iran. Thousands of people pledged their support to the protesters in Iran yesterday in Paris. Women with family ties to Iran, feminist groups and politicians gathered in Republic Square and then marched through the east of the French capital.

Also in the city of Diyarbakir in southeastern Turkey with a large Kurdish population, as well as in Izmir on the west coast, women expressed their grief for Kurdish Amini and solidarity with the women of Iran in Toronto, New York, Los Angeles, Bucharest and Beirut took place during the weekend rallies also take place.

Violence in protests at Tehran University

Karin Senz, ARD Istanbul, 3 October 2022 11:05 am