Mahmoudzadeh: Interior minister should be held accountable
A Kurdish deputy in Iran criticized government's deadly crackdown on protests and the targeting of civilians with live ammunition, and said Iran's Interior Minister should be held accountable for the situation, independent news outlet Iran Wire said.
Jalal Mahmoudzadeh, representing the Kurdish-majority city of Mahabad in Iranian parliament, was recently indicted for denouncing state forces who killed civilians during protests.
"Instead of following up on the rights of the protesting people and the families of the victims of Mahabad and other Kurdish cities, the judiciary has filed a lawsuit against me," he had reacted.
A few days after he was officially accused by the prosecution, he said in parliament:
"What is the reason for the nightly raids on houses and destruction of cars, writing slogans on the walls inside residential buildings and creating terror, setting up checkpoints at the entrance of Kurdish cities and inspecting people’s personal belongings?"
"The Interior Minister and the head of the National Security Council should be held responsible for this situation (...) We ask you to identify those who fired at people with live ammunition, and to put them on trial. But unfortunately, instead of pursuing the rights of the people, the judiciary has surprisingly sued me."
At least 448 people, including 60 children and 29 women, have been killed during protests that started after young Kurdish woman Mahsa (Jina) Amini's death in police custody on 16 September, according to Iran Human Rights, and among the fatalities are more than 105 people who have been killed in Kurdish-majority settlements over the past month.
In a rare official acknowledgement of the high fatality figure, a senior Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) commander said that over 300 people have been killed during Mahsa Amini protests, including state forces.
General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the commander of the aerospace division of the IRGC, also claimed that many of the fatalities were ordinary Iranians not involved in the protests.