Iranian women burning headscarves during protests as a symbolic move against the compulsory Islamic dress code or hijab

World Leaders React To Death Of Hijab Victim, Protests In Iran

Friday, 09/23/2022

World leaders’ reactions to the ongoing protests in Iran over the death of a hijab victim are pouring in on the backdrop of President Ebrahim Raisi’s visit to the UN General Assembly.

World leaders’ reactions to the ongoing protests in Iran over the death of a hijab victim are pouring in on the backdrop of President Ebrahim Raisi’s visit to the UN General Assembly. 

The Australian foreign ministry told Iran International’s correspondent that Canberra is deeply saddened by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman killed in hijab police custody, and also voiced concerns over the Islamic Republic’s crackdown on the popular protests for basic freedoms. 

"Treatment of women in Iran continues to be a matter of grave concern and we regularly raise our concerns over Iran’s significant discrimination against women with officials in both Tehran and Canberra and in multilateral forums," a spokesperson said in response to Iran International. 

On Thursday, the US Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen described the death of Mahsa Amini as “yet another act of brutality by the Iranian regime’s security forces against its own people,” after announcing sanctions against Iran’s Morality Police and some security officials. 

The remarks came a day after President Joe Biden said in his address to the UN General Assembly that “Today we stand with the brave citizens and women in Iran who right now are demonstrating to secure their basic rights.”


US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan also said on Thursday that "Today, the United States is sanctioning Iran’s so-called 'Morality' Police responsible for the death of Mahsa Amini. We will continue to hold Iranian officials accountable and support Iranians’ ability to protest freely."

National Security Advisor of the United States Jake Sullivan

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also touched upon the new measures, saying that Washington “sanctioned the entity responsible for the arrest and death of Mahsa and designated seven other Iranian security officials responsible for suppressing non-violent protests.” He had earlier called on the Iranian government to end its systemic persecution of women and to allow peaceful protest. 

Earlier in the day, White House National Security Council Coordinator John Kirby told our correspondent that "President Biden was very clear about our desire to see peaceful protests. We're going to continue to stand up for civil and human rights."

Senior US Democratic Senator from Vermont Patrick Leahy said, “We should all stand with brave women of Iran and their supporters protesting the human rights abuses of the Iranian government and demanding basic rights for women.” “Their courage gives me hope for a brighter future in Iran.”

Also on Thursday, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock denounced "the brutal attack against the courageous women" who have been demonstrating in Iran, calling the crackdown on the ongoing protests "an attack on humanity,” adding that Berlin will ask the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to deal with the crackdown as a violation of human rights.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde (left) and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock

Voicing solidarity with the Iranians’ protests, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde said, “Sweden stands with all those who mourn Mahsa Amini in Iran and elsewhere.” He also expressed deep concerns about reports of injured and dead in connection with ongoing protests. “Women of Iran should be heard. Human rights for all Iranians, including the right to peaceful protest, must be ensured.”

In his speech at the General Assembly, Chile's President Gabriel Boric also condemned the death in detention of Amini by Iranian police, saying that the international community must "mobilize efforts to stop violence against women whether it be in Iran, in memory of Mahsa Amini, who died at the hands of the police this week, or anywhere in the world".

Unlike President Raisi who ignored Amini’s death and the current protests in his country during his address, Israeli Prime Minister said, “Iran’s regime hates Jews, hates women, hates gay people, hates the West. They hate and kill Muslims who think differently, like Salman Rushdie and Mahsa Amini.” “Their hate is a way of life. It is a way to preserve their oppressive rule,” he added. 

The Oslo-based NGO Iran Human Rights said on Thursday that the death toll of the protests across Iran has risen to 31. Iran's state broadcaster earlier confirmed the deaths of 17 people, including security forces and protesters, but the real number is expected to be higher.

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