A large gathering of rally attendees descended on Vancouver’s Art Gallery on Sunday.
Hundreds went to the popular location for protests and public press conferences in support of ongoing unrest in Iran due to the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. She died while in custody of Iranian ‘morality police’ for allegedly wearing her hijab too loosely.
Several speakers referred to the ongoing clashes between protesters and the Iranian government.
Posters for the rally at the Gallery could be seen throughout the city in the past few days.
“A large gathering of Iranians in support of Mahsa Amini (Jina) in defence of oppressed people and in solidarity with the people’s movement against the criminal Islamic regime of Iran and toward Freedom for the people of Iran,” read one of the posters.
On Thursday, the U.S. government announced sanctions against the morality police, but outside the American consulate in Vancouver, demonstrators called for more action. Some held banners with Amini’s photo and called for justice amid chants of “USA don’t support terrorists.”
“Right now in Iran, the Iranian guards are killing young people who came on the street and said ‘Enough is enough’. We don’t want this regime. Women are burning their hijabs because the hijab has been compulsory,” demonstrator Tahmineh Sadeghi told Global News.
“This regime has no respect for basic human rights.”
Police in Iran claim Amini died of a heart attack and was not mistreated, but her family has cast doubt on that account. Independent experts affiliated with the United Nations said Thursday that reports suggested she was severely beaten by the morality police, without offering evidence.
Demonstrations of support have spread around the world, including Canada, where some women have taken to cutting their hair in solidarity. That has turned into a viral movement on social media.
– With files from Global News’ Simon Little, Negar Mojtahedi and the Associated Press
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