Death of a girl faced the regime in Iran with the most serious challenge in years – World – manager.bg – World

Death of a girl faced the regime in Iran with the most serious challenge in years – World – manager.bg – World
Death of a girl faced the regime in Iran with the most serious challenge in years – World – manager.bg – World

The death of a 22-year-old Kurdish girl detained for allegedly not following the rules of wearing a hijab is the most serious challenge Iran’s leadership has faced in years, the BBC said in an analysis.

While authorities say the victim, Mahsa Amini, died mainly of medical reasons, her family and countless other Iranians who protested believe her death was the result of a beating. Protesters believe that if they don’t act now, they could fall victim to the same fate.

Mahsa’s death came at a time when Iranians are feeling particularly tired. Systematic corruption among Iran’s political elite, growing poverty with inflation above 50%, deadlock in nuclear negotiations and lack of social and political freedom have left Iran’s young and vibrant population feeling hopeless. According to the Research Institute of the Social Security Organization of Iran, at least 25 million Iranians lived below the poverty line by June 2021. That number is even higher now.

These are not the first protests in the history of the Islamic Republic of Iran. But many observers believe there is something different about them. Above all, this is a women’s protest. Various civil liberties groups have continually drawn attention to the oppression of women in Iran, a huge section of society that was the biggest loser from the Islamic Revolution of 1979. Iranian women were forced to wear the hijab soon after the revolution and lost many of their rights , including the right to travel, the right to work and the right to custody of children over the age of seven. There was not much objection to these changes from men at the time.

“The fact that many men are joining the protests shows that society has moved towards more progressive demands,” said Mehrdad Darvishpour, an Iranian sociologist who lives in Sweden. The main slogan of the protesters is “Woman, Life, Freedom”, a call for equality and a firm stand against religious fundamentalism. Moreover, these protests are much more inclusive among the population than the previous ones. The so-called Green Movement of 2009 succeeded in getting the middle class to protest against alleged electoral fraud. Although large in size, this protest was concentrated in major cities. Other major protests in 2017 and 2019 were confined to poorer areas.

It is striking that the current protests span both middle-class and working-class areas. This shows that they seem to have shifted from local or ethnic issues to more inclusive sections of the population. “We are witnessing the birth of a mega-movement,” Darvishpour told the BBC. A movement that was led by women, but managed to unite other movements as well. And more importantly, the symbolic value of burning hijabs shattered the image of an unbreakable regime. According to Darvishpour, there is no turning back from this experience.

Mahsa Amini’s death has shaken even some of the staunchest supporters of the government. Many of them, including some clergy, question the violent tactics used by the so-called the morality police, against women. So the government has two options: 1) change its strict hijab rules, which are part of the Islamic Republic’s identity, which could encourage the protesters to continue until they reach their final demand for regime change; 2) Or do nothing and continue the violent suppression and killing of the protesters, which may temporarily calm the unrest, but will only add fuel to their ever-growing anger.

Many of the riot police now quelling the protests also suffer from economic hardship and do not necessarily support the authorities. If these protests continue, they may shift the layers. In addition, the supreme leader’s 83-year-old age and poor health are reported by many Iranians on both sides. It is unclear whether whoever succeeds him will be able to win the support of the regime’s staunch supporters. This may not be the last chapter, but it is a very important one. Yes, there are lives lost, but more cracks are appearing in a system that is no longer effective for many angry Iranians who want a different way of life.

The article is in bulgaria

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