Protests rocking Iran over the death of a 22-year-old woman in police custody have spread to at least 50 cities.
Videos showing women burning their headscarves and crowds chanting "death to the dictator" are flooding social media despite the intermittent shut down of the country's internet.
The uprisings were sparked by the death of a Kurdish Iranian woman who was arrested for violating Iran's strict rules on wearing the hijab. She was in police custody and died of her injuries.
The Iranian authorities claimed that Amini died of a heart attack, but her family and many Iranians accuse the government of covering up her death. Supposedly, Amini was killed by Iran's morality police. The pictures of Amini in a hospital bed caused outrage.
The conservative Islamic theocracy of 86 million people, whose strict laws forbid any dissent and impose fearsome punishments for those deemed a threat to the ruling regime, has seen huge acts of rebellion. It is a criminal offense in Iran to appear in public as a woman without a head covering.
The New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran says the government has killed 36 people.
CNBC was unable to verify the numbers.
What this uprising has revealed is the complete illegitimacy of not only the Islamic Republic, but indeed of the 1979 Iranian Revolution, in the eyes of this new generation.
The U.S. blamed Iran's morality police for Amini's death and imposed sanctions on them.
The Treasury Secretary said that the death of mahsa Amini was an act of brutality by the Iranian regime against its own people. Several senior Iranian military commanders were hit with sanctions.
The secretary of state said that the Iranian government needs to end its persecution of women.
CNBC requested comment from Iran's Foreign Ministry and Mission to the United Nations. The president of Iran did not mention Amini's death or the protests during his speech at the UN.
Many young Iranians don't have much to lose.
Iran is suffering from a brain drain as people who can leave the country do so and years of living under sanctions have left the economy in tatters. The Iranian rial has fallen 8% against the dollar this month due to faltering negotiations with the U.S. In June, the rate of inflation was over 50%.A picture obtained by AFP outside Iran on September 21, 2022, shows Iranian demonstrators burning a rubbish bin in the capital Tehran during a protest for Mahsa Amini, days after she died in police custody. -
One woman in Tehran told CNBC that police are trying to get help from neighboring countries like Afghanistan in order to beat and kill protesters in Iran.
She said that she and her fellow demonstrators would ask the police why they were against them. We want you to come and protest with us.
She said that some of them swore at them, but most said they forced them.
Not just has Iran oppressed the women there but it has made the world hate us.
According to Iranians who spoke to CNBC, the situation is getting more dangerous.
One Iranian woman living in the Middle East told CNBC that things have only gotten worse since the government in Iran cut the internet.
She spoke out of fear of government reprisal and said that the people were not stepping down and wanted to overthrow the government.
The woman said that the state has been attacking women for not wearing the headscarf for 43 years.
She said that if you show too much hair, you will be taken to a reeducation center, and if it's not your first time, you will be jailed.
She said that the world hates us because of Iran's oppression of the women there.
Roham Alvandi, an Iran historian and professor at the London School of Economics, says that the recent protests in Iran are indicative of the younger generation's attitude towards the Islamic Republic. The international support they have received presents a challenge to the regime.
A group of people who have lived most of their lives in a heavily Securitized state, a devastated economy, and a global pariah blame the Islamic Republic for this revolt.
This uprising has shown that the Islamic Republic and the 1979 Iranian Revolution are not separate entities. This has huge ramifications for the entire project of political Islam.TOPSHOT - Nasibe Samsaei, an Iranian woman living in Turkey, cuts her ponytail off during a protest outside the Iranian consulate in Istanbul on September 21, 2022, following the death of an Iranian woman after her arrest by the country’s morality police in Tehran.
The most significant of the anti-government uprisings in Iran over the last two decades was in 2009, when hundreds of thousands of Iranians protested election results widely believed to be rigged.
Evan Seigel is an academic who has co-published books on Iranian history. They have held their own in street fighting with the repressive organs, particularly the para- police.
The regime's medieval attitudes towards women has become a central issue in mass resistance to the regime.Members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) march during the annual military parade In Iran’s southwestern city of Ahvaz before the attack.
Analysts don't see a chance of the regime being overthrown because of the strength of its security apparatus Iranians say they don't know if they have any hope.
More than half a million law enforcement personnel are employed by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and its paramilitary force, Basij. The green movement was put down by these bodies.
The events underscore the irony of the Biden administration trying to revive the Iran nuclear deal in exchange for sanctions being lifted.
The image of Raisi and the UNGA podium while protests raged against the Islamic Republic across Iran is a good example of Washington's Iran policy incoherence.
He said that Iranian women have protested Iran's hijab laws before. This is just the beginning of the story.