Iran’s supreme leader breaks silence on Amini protests, blames US following Sunday clash
Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei broke his silence Monday on the protests ignited by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, saying he was “deeply heartbroken” by her death while blaming America for the riots themselves.
“This rioting was planned,” Khamenei said while speaking with police students in Tehran. “These riots and insecurities were designed by America and the Zionist regime, and their employees.”
Khamenei also condemned protesters for ripping off their hijabs and setting mosques, banks and police cars on fire. The leader proceeded to say the actions “are not normal, that are unnatural,” while stating that “those who foment unrest to sabotage the Islamic Republic deserve harsh prosecution and punishment.”
Iran began cracking down on universities and students nationwide, with hundreds of young people and students arrested Monday at the country’s top technology university following an hours-long standoff with police.
IRANIAN OFFICIALS CHANT ‘DEATH TO AMERICA, DEATH TO ISRAEL’ IN GOVERNMENT BODY: WATCH THE VIDEO
Sharif University of Technology in Tehran also announced that only doctoral students would be allowed on campus following a Sunday clash between antigovernment protesters and pro-establishment students. The new policy would be implemented until further notice.
Anonymous witnesses told the Associated Press police had kept hundreds of students on campus during the protests while also firing tear gas to disband the demonstrations. Plainclothes officers are said to have surrounded the university campus as protests went on well into the night, ultimately detaining at least 300 students, according to the university’s student association.
The clash between the two entities sparked backlash on Monday.
IRAN ATTACK KILLS 19, INCLUDING 4 ELITE REVOLUTIONARY GUARD MEMBERS
The countrywide unrest following Amini’s death while in police custody is going on its third week despite governmental efforts to shut them down. Amini had been arrested for allegedly violating the Islamic dress code, in line with the recent trend for Iranian women to protest the country’s leadership.
Witnesses say a majority of those arrested seem to be under the age of 25. The exact number of arrests remains unknown; however, local officials are currently reporting at least 1,500 arrests.
IRANIAN AUTHORITIES ARREST CELEBRITIES, ARTISTS, FOREIGN NATIONALS DURING PROTEST CRACKDOWN: REPORT
Iran’s state television recently reported the death toll could be as high as 41. Right groups along with London-based Amnesty International are reporting a higher count, with 52 victims total.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
The protests have garnered international support, with many heading to Iranian embassies in their individual countries in solidarity.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Denial of responsibility! Today Breeze.in is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – firstname.lastname@example.org. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.