An Iranian was killed by a shot to the head by the security forces of his country while celebrating the defeat of the Iranian team against the United States by 0-1 in the World Cup in Qatar, several rights organizations denounced on Wednesday. humans.
Mehran Samak, 27, died after honking his horn while driving his car in Bandar Anzali, a city on the Caspian Sea coast northwest of Tehran, according to several human rights groups. The young man "was directly attacked and shot in the head by security forces... after the defeat of the national team against the United States," denounced the Oslo-based Iran Human Rights (IHR) group.
Another organization, the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI), claimed that security forces killed the man while he was attending the celebrations. This organization released a video of Mehran Samak's funeral in Tehran during which the crowd could be heard chanting "Death to the dictator." This slogan against the Iranian Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is one of the main rallying cries of the protest movement unleashed by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman who died on September 16 in Tehran after her arrest by the moral police.
At least 448 people, including 60 children under the age of 18, have been killed in the crackdown on protests by security forces, according to a tally compiled by IHR. On Monday, Iranian authorities reported for the first time the deaths of more than 300 people since the start of the unrest.
Iran's defeat Tuesday night in Doha against the United States, its staunch enemy, and its elimination from the World Cup have sparked clashing scenes of joy and despair among Iranians, in a country divided over the protest movement launched two and a half months ago. This division was reflected in the Iranian team, which refused to sing the national anthem before the start of its opening match in the World Cup.
Precisely one of the footballers of the team, Saeid Ezatolahi, who played in the match against the USA and is a native of Bandar Anzali, revealed on social networks that he knew Amak, and posted a photo of the two of them together, as children , in a soccer team, according to The Guardian. “Following the bitter loss last night, the news of your passing set my heart on fire,” Ezatolahi said on Instagram, describing Samak as a “childhood teammate”.
The footballer did not comment on the death of his former teammate, but affirmed that "someday the masks will fall, the truth will be revealed", leaving for poetry what the heavy hand of the ayatollahs' regime prevents from saying clearly.
There were several cities in Iran where Iran's defeat against the United States was celebrated, considered by the regime as "The Great Satan", its greatest enemy. The songs and dances for the defeat were heard in Tehran, but especially in the northwest of the country, with a Kurdish majority, where ten days ago the security forces repressed the protests in clashes that left a dozen dead. This can be seen in the following images of Senendy, the capital of the region.