Violent crackdown on protests: Ottawa sanctions Iran
Iran is rocked by street violence that has cost the lives of at least 41 people since the death last week of Mahsa Amini, who was arrested for wearing the veil “inappropriately”, according to the country's authorities.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Monday that Canada will sanction dozens of individuals and organizations, including Iran's vice police, in the wake of Tehran's violent crackdown on protests.
< p class="e-p">“To the women who protest and to those who support them: we are here for you and with you,” said Mr. Trudeau at a press conference in Ottawa.
Iran has shown contempt for human rights for a long time, he said apologetically, explaining that the death of Mahsa Amini, a young woman detained by the country's morality police for allegedly violated its dress code, and the ensuing crackdown on protests is just the most recent demonstration of this.
“We add our voices, the voices of all Canadians, to the millions of people around the world demanding that the Iranian government listen to its people, end the repression of rights and freedoms, and let women and all Iranians live their lives and express themselves peacefully.
— Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
The House of Commons last week unanimously passed a Bloc Québécois motion offering condolences to loved ones of the deceased young woman and “her solidarity with the women of Iran who are fighting for their rights and freedoms”.
In a speech a few minutes later before the United Nations General Assembly, Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly urged countries to respect women's rights and access to abortion. while eradicating sexual violence.
Ms. Joly summarized Canada's foreign relations priorities and concerns. This includes being part of a “global coalition in support of equality” that will push back against “the growing attacks on women's rights and freedoms”.
Protests in the wake of Mahsa Amini's death have spread to at least 46 towns and villages. Iranian state television has suggested that at least 41 protesters and police have been killed since the clashes began on September 17. An Associated Press tally of official statements from authorities lists at least 13 dead and more than 1,200 protesters arrested.
With information from Dylan Robertson and the Associated Press.