Human Rights Watch demands that Iran investigate killing of 30 protestors

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Human Rights Watch has called on Iran to open impartial investigations into the killing of 30 protesters since January.

The human rights organization said in a statement published on Saturday that the Iranian authorities did not show any sign of conducting impartial investigations, either into those deaths, or into law enforcement officials’ use of excessive force to repress protests.

It called the Iranian regime to drop all charges brought against protesters for peaceful assembly and release those detained on that basis.

Since August 2, 2018, authorities have detained more than 50 people during protests in Tehran.

Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch said: “The Iranian government is using the authoritarian playbook to respond to protests, criminalize peaceful dissent, and protect security forces from scrutiny.”

She added: “Rather than blaming ‘foreign elements’ for protests, Iranian authorities should allow citizens to critique the government through their right to peaceful dissent.”

On July 31, a new wave of protests against the deteriorating economic conditions and perceptions of government corruption began in the city of Esfahan and quickly spread to other cities, including Karaj in Alborz province and Tehran, the capital.

HRW said that since December, 2017, protests swept over many Iranian cities, during which the authority arrested around four thousands protesters, while the Intelligence ministry detained 150 students, with 17 given prison terms.

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