In Iran, state television hacked as anti-power protests enter their fourth week

Protests and anti-government rallies in Iran have entered their fourth week, with further protests reported on Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 October at several universities in Tehran and in Kurdish-majority areas in the north of the country, where Mahsa Amini was from.

The death of this 22-year-old woman, which occurred on September 16 after her arrest by the police of morality for wearing an illegal veil, was the spark that ignited the protest. Since then, the daily demonstrations in almost all the provinces of the country, against the rules on religious dress and more generally against the theocratic regime, have been severely repressed.

Screenshot of the hacking of the Iranian state television channel, Saturday 8 October 2022, broadcast on Twitter by the Edalat-e Ali group (
Screenshot of the hacking of the Iranian state television channel, Saturday 8 October 2022, broadcast on Twitter by the Edalat-e Ali group (

During the retransmission of a speech by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei on Saturday, the state television channel was also briefly hacked. A photograph of the Ayatollah surrounded by flames appeared for about fifteen minutes with the sentences “Join us and get up”, “The blood of our youth flows from your claws” as well as a song with the slogan of the Iranian youth uprising, “Woman, life, freedom”.

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Protests were held in Sharif and Azad universities, as well as in several neighborhoods and in Tehran’s bazaar, according to the Associated Press on Saturday. The campus of Sharif, Iran’s leading scientific university, was closed due to violent incidents between students and police last weekend.

A video of the demonstrations in Tehran on 8 October, broadcast by a reporter from the Point.

“Police forces used tear gas to disperse crowds in dozens of places in Tehran”confirmed the official IRNA agency, without further details, but adding that the protesters “uttered slogans and set fire to and damaged public property, including a police station and garbage cans”. A member of the paramilitary militia bassidji was killed on Saturday “after being seriously wounded in the head following an armed attack by a crowd”, reports IRNA.

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“We are all waiting for something to happen, like a time bomb”

The Iranian province of Kurdistan, where Mahsa Amini came from, continues one of the epicenters of the demonstrations for four weeks. According to the Kurdistan Human Rights Networkan NGO based in France, demonstrations were held on Saturday in the capital, Sanandaj, and in the cities of Javanrud, Kamyaran, Bukan and Mahabad, in which two people were killed and fifty-seven others were arrested.

Sharo, a 35-year-old academic interviewed by the Associated Press, describes a situation “tense and volatile” in Sanandaj. “We are all waiting for something to happen, like a time bomb”, he told from Telegram to the news agency, which reports a massive police presence and a general strike partially blocking the city. The official IRNA news agency announced the death on the streets of the city of a member of the Revolutionary Guards, the ideological army of the Iranian theocracy.

According to Iran Human Rights (IHR), an NGO based in Oslo, at least ninety-two protesters have been killed since September 16 and hundreds more have been arrested. The latest report provided by the official Iranian media dates back to September 27, with one report “about sixty” of dead. As for the police, members of the Revolutionary Guards or the militia of the bassidji, the number of victims reaches fourteen, according to Tehran. The Iranian state has also put in place severe restrictions on internet access to control what it calls “Revolts”including Instagram and WhatsApp blocks, as well as VPN monitoring.

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Iranian president urges students to be ‘vigilant’

While the protest continued in some Tehran universities, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi was Al-Zahra, the first all-female Iranian university, to deny any involvement by security forces in Mahsa Amini’s death. According to a statement from the Iranian presidency, he told the students:

“The enemy thought they could achieve their goals in universities, ignoring the fact that our students and teachers are vigilant and will not allow the enemy’s false dreams to come true. “

According to a medical report released on October 7 by the Iranian authorities, Mahsa Amini’s death in custody was linked to a brain disease and was not caused by beatings. Shortly after his death, his father assured the FARS agency that his daughter was “in perfect health”.

Supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, came out of silence on October 3 to say that, according to him, “These riots and insecurity are the work of the United States, the Zionist regime [Israël, selon le langage officiel de Téhéran], of their mercenaries and some Iranian traitors who helped them from abroad ”.

Le Monde with AP and AFP

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