The Iranian court has pardoned 22,000 people who participated in widespread protests in Iran in the past six months. This is reported by the state news agency IRNA. However, it is unclear whether all those people have already been released.
Iran’s state news agency IRNA quotes Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejehi, the head of Iran’s judicial system. He would have announced that 82,656 Iranian prisoners and Iranians who risk prosecution have been pardoned. In a pardon, all legal consequences of a crime are waived.
Of those 82,000, about 22,000 people were arrested in the past six months because they had participated in the popular protest. Whether all those people were also immediately released is not clear.
The number of detained protesters that Ejehi mentions are even higher than some human rights organizations had previously thought. According to the organization, Human Rights Activists in Iran, 19,700 people have been arrested recently.
Popular protests in Iran began in early September after the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was detained in Tehran by Iran’s vice police for not wearing her headscarf correctly. According to bystanders, she was dealt with harshly by the police. The woman died shortly afterwards.
In the following weeks and months, mainly (young) women took to the streets to protest against the strict religious regime. The protest started in northwestern Iran, a region where many Kurds live and the region where Amini lived. Later, the protest spread to the rest of the country.
The protest was regularly brutally suppressed by the security services. In addition to the thousands of people who were arrested, according to Human Rights Activists in Iran, at least 530 people were also killed.