December 4, 2022

Iranian high schoolers join anti-regime protests as they return to school


The explosive protests that have spread around Iran have made their way into universities and even high schools following the start of the school year in October. Videos shared online show crowds of students protesting, many of them girls and young women. They have been filmed chanting slogans, marching through the streets and taking off their headscarves in school courtyards – acts of defiance that are often met with harsh retaliation by security forces.

Chanting “Death to the dictator!” and “Woman! Life! Freedom!”, young women and girls have been at the forefront of protests around Iran since September 16. With the start of the Iranian school year on October 2, the unrest has moved from the streets to the schoolyard.

At a high school in a city near Tehran, an official from the Ministry of Education came to talk to students about the importance of wearing the Islamic headscarf on October 3. But a group of young girls yelled at him “Shame on you!”, threw objects at him and then chased him out of the school. 

In a similar scene, a representative from the paramilitary Basij forces, a branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, came to speak to a group of high school girls in a city in central Iran. The students responded by taking off their headscarves and waving them in the air while chanting “Get lost, Basiji!”

بسیجی رو آوردن تا برا برای دانش آموزان

سخنرانی کنه و پاسخ دانش آموزان :

بسیجی برو گمشو#مهسا_امینی#نیکا_شاکرمی

— ☀️👑من یک آرشــــم👑☀️ (@Air0fFreedom) October 5, 2022 “Get lost, Basiji!” yelled students at a representative of the Basij security forces during a speech on October 4, 2022 in central Iran. This wave of demonstrations began as a movement against mandatory veiling laws and their brutal enforcement by Iran’s “morality police”. A 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, died after being arrested by the morality police for wearing “improper clothing”.

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