Baluch Activists Campaign say a teenager arrested during protests has attempted suicide in Zahedan prison, southeast of Iran, due to severe physical, sexual and mental torture.

According to the human rights organization, the teenager was arrested by the Revolutionary Gaurd intelligence in Zahedan on January 3, but he tried to take his own life after being severely tortured.

The 16-year-old has been identified as Benyamin Kouhkan, a citizen of Zahedan, the provincial capital of the largely Sistan-Baluchestan province largely populated by Sunnis of Baluch ethnicity.

There have been numerous reports of torture and rape of detained protesters in the past five months. Many have been forced make confessions admitting to crimes they never committed.

An informed source told the Baluch Activist Campaign that Benyamin informed his mother in a phone call that he had been subjected to severe physical and sexual torture to obtain coerced confessions.

According to this source, Benyamin tried to commit suicide after that, but he failed.

Reports about the alleged rape of a 15-year-old Baluch girl in June by a police commander in Chabahar, who has remained immune from prosecution, sparked protests in different areas of Baluchistan in September. The anger over the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody also added fuel to the fire with more than 100 Baluch protesters killed so far and 307 arrested during demonstrations.

Residents of Zahedan have been protesting every Friday after prayers since September 30, 2022.

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