BCNM Statement in Solidarity with Iranian Protestors

27 Sep, 2022

BCNM Statement in Solidarity with Iranian Protestors

For the last 43 years, Iran’s government has controlled women’s choices, their bodies, and their freedoms. On September 16th, Mahsa Amini, a 22 year old Iranian girl who was visiting Tehran with her family was killed by the morality police. They singled her out because they claimed her hijab was not being worn perfectly. Mahsa’s death has become a rallying cry for Iranians in Iran and all around the world to protest the decades of injustice and oppression.

Protesting against the government is illegal in Iran and therefore Iranians are bravely standing strong in the face of extreme police brutality. Already many people from all parts of Iranian society have been killed with more than a thousand arrested since Mahsa’s death in Iran. Many students and educators in Iranian universities have joined the protests, which has led to their arrests and an uncertain future.

Since Mahsa’s death, social media platforms have played an important role in Iranian voices being heard abroad. Since last week, Iran has shut down access to the internet in many parts of Iran to try to regain full control over the narrative, and to continue its brutality without the world watching. In 2019, Iran’s government shut down the internet during the “Bloody November”, and killed around 1500 of protesters. The true scope of that crackdown was not known until much later due to these shutdowns. It is important for those outside of Iran to amplify their calls to end this brutality and support their human rights.

As educators and researchers at UC Berkeley Center for New Media we stand in solidarity with Iranian women who are demanding their basic human rights. We stand in solidarity with all students in Iran who are protesting for their freedoms. And to all the people in Iran and our Iranian students here: we hear your voice, we support you, and we will carry your message.