Smoke rises from the Evin Prison in Tehran Smoke rises from the Evin Prison in Tehran 

Fire kills inmates at prison in Iran amid ongoing protests

Iran says a fire at a prison in Tehran on Saturday killed 4 people and injured 61 others, as protests continue against the death of a young woman while in the custody of Iran’s morality police.

By Nathan Morley

At least four people have been killed in a fire at Tehran's Evin prison on Saturday.

In addition to those killed, around 60 were injured following a fire at Evin prison, which houses many political prisoners.

Speaking to the media, Tehran's governor said there was a riot in a wing of the prison housing petty criminals, and that the situation was now quiet.

Gunfire heard inside prison

However, gunfire and explosions could be heard in several videos of the disturbance posted online.

At the same time, a sizable crowd gathered outside the building and riot police were seen entering the prison.

The country has been gripped for weeks by anti-government protests, but it is unclear if the prison turmoil is linked to the wider unrest.

Ongoing protests

The current wave of demonstrations sweeping the country has been the largest in Iran since 2019.

As it stands, they show no signs of abating. Protests first erupted on 16 September after the death of a 22-year-old Mahsa Amini who was arrested for supposedly wearing a hijab headscarf in an improper fashion.

Campaigners say she suffered a deadly blow to the head, a claim denied by officials.

Police argue that she died of natural causes, but her family believe that she was exposed to beating and torture. Her death and arrest came amid a government clampdown on women’s rights.

Harsh crackdown

It is reported that more than 150 people have been killed during protests since the death of Ms. Amini.

On 8 October, France urged its citizens to leave the country for fear of being detained arbitrarily in the crackdown on protesters.

At the same time, the Dutch government urged its nationals to leave Iran and advised against all travel to the country.

In Brussels, the European Parliament backed a resolution condemning the death of Ms. Amini.

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16 October 2022, 13:09