On Wednesday, members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) reportedly opened fire on “schoolgirls” chanting anti-regime slogans.
The IRGC is Iran’s most brutal weapon against protesters outraged by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini at the hands of the country’s vice police. The unrest has been more widespread in Iran’s Kurdish regions, and the regime is now preparing for a brutal crackdown in Sanandaj, the region’s capital.
Law enforcement has killed hundreds of protesters across the country since Amini’s death last month. The Hengaw Organization for Human Rights said IRGC soldiers killed five people and injured 400 others with “machine gun fire and other violence” across the North Kurdish region this week.
Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and President Ebrahim Raisi are now overseeing the crackdown in Sanandaj, where the IRGC has previously used live ammunition against protesters. Iranian warplanes were also seen arriving at the city’s airport.
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Violence against protesters has intensified unrest across the county, with more innocent people killed at the hands of the regime.
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The protests first erupted after the police murder of Amini, who was arrested in September for wearing her hijab improperly. The vice squad took her into custody and she was later released in a coma. She soon died in a hospital.
The alleged murder of 17-year-old Nika Shakamari is also a source of outrage. Iranian police followed her away from a protest where she set her hijab on fire. She was later killed and authorities say she fell from a roof. Family members, however, say his injuries did not match that story.
“Women like Mahsa and Nika have become the faces and hashtags of this movement because their cold and violent deaths clearly illustrate the brutality of this regime against all of its constituents, but also underscores how obsessed this regime is with control and repression of young women who are demanding only their basic freedoms,” Foreign Desk editor Lisa Daftari told Fox News Digital on Tuesday.
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Iranian authorities sought to conceal the news of Shakamari’s death for nine days. Police eventually removed his body from a morgue and buried him in a rural area against his family’s wishes.