Iran has shown “utmost restraint” in dealing with the ongoing anti-regime protests in the country, Iran’s foreign ministry said on Thursday in response to the international outcry sparked by Tehran’s execution of a protester.
Mohsen Shekari, who had been convicted of wounding a member of the security forces and blocking a street in Tehran, was executed early Thursday, state media reported.
The execution, widely condemned by Western powers, was the first carried out by Iran in connection with the country’s ongoing protests, which authorities refer to as “riots” and which have swept across Iran since September 16 when 22-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini died after her arrest by the morality police.
Since Amini’s death, demonstrators have been calling for the downfall of the regime in a movement that has become one of the boldest challenges to the Islamic Republic since its establishment in 1979.
“In countering riots, Iran’s shown utmost restraint & -unlike many Western regimes who smear & violently crackdown even the peaceful protesters- Iran has employed proportionate & standard anti-riot methods,” Iran’s foreign ministry said on Twitter.
“The same is true for the judicial process: restraint & proportionality. Yet, public security is redline,” it added.
The ministry’s claim of showing restraint comes as Iran’s crackdown on protests has seen hundreds killed and thousands detained, according to rights groups.