Anti-Islamic Republic protests continued Sunday night in Iran and abroad, after state-sponsored rallies in a few cities failed to garner significant support.
Iran Human Rights (IHR) said Saturday at least 54 protesters had been killed, but no clear figure is available. In many cases, handing over the bodies of victims to their families was made contingent on agreeing to secret burials, IHR reported.
For the first time Monday several professors at the prestigious Sharif University of Technology in Tehran went on strike, demanding the release of all detained students.
“I will not hold any classes before detained students of Sharif University are freed to the last person,” Dr. Ali Sharifi Zareji, a professor of bioinformatics and artificial intelligence tweeted Monday.
The Iranian academic year started September 23, but authorities have cancelled all classes at several major universities including Tehran University, where some students have nevertheless staged big protest rallies. Authorities have offered online classes although the government has shut off or slowed down internet access since the protests began eight days ago. They have also arrested dozens of students.
Students at several universities have released statements calling for a strike and demanded the release of all student activists and returning to in-person classes. Students have also urged their professors to join the strike.
The Coordination Council of Iranian Teachers’ Trade Associations Sunday announced a strike for Monday and Wednesday (Tuesday is a public holiday) in support of the protesters. This is the first major call for a strike, although people on social media have been urging workers at key government economic sectors not to show up for work.
In many cities such as Shiraz and Qazvin as well as Alborz province, authorities closed schools Monday “due to air pollution” but in other areas classes convened as usual.
In the past few days, protesters have resorted to writing graffiti on walls and many of those who do not take to the streets to protest show their support by shouting slogans from rooftops and their windows after nightfall or honking their car horns. This stretches available security forces, who have to ignore some protest manifestations.
Meanwhile, thousands of Iranians and their supporters took to the streets Sunday in other countries in Europe and elsewhere including London, Paris, Milan, and Hamburg, to protest the regime. They were also gathering and rallies in the United States.
In London and Paris protests turned violent when crowds who chanted “Death to the Islamic Republic” and “Death to Khamenei” tried to storm the Iranian embassy buildings.
In London protesters also gathered outside the Islamic Centre of England in north-west London and chanted slogans peacefully. A video on social media showed a protester who made it to the roof of the Islamic Centre, also known as Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s office in Britain, waving an Iranian the pre-1979 flag.
London police said Monday several officers had sustained injuries including broken bones and five are in hospital following a clash with protesters outside the Iranian embassy and 12 people were arrested. “Officers on duty reported that while the majority of those who were in the embassy on Sunday acted peacefully, a significant group who arrived actively sought to confront officers and protesters,” London News Online wrote.
In Paris hundreds of protesters who wanted to enter the embassy clashed with French anti-riot police which used tear gas to stop them.