Videos have surfaced showing Iranian military and security forces allegedly firing live ammunition and tear gas to disperse demonstrators protesting against the Islamic Republic hours after the Iranian government admitted shooting down a Ukrainian jetliner killing over 100 people.
The Videos which were sent to the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran show a crowd of demonstrators near Azadi, or Freedom Square in Tehran on Sunday night fleeing as a tear gas canister landed among them.
Then People can be seen coughing trying to escape the fumes, with one woman calling out in Farsi: “They fired tear gas at people! Azadi Square. Death to the dictator!”
Another woman could be seen with blood gushing down her leg, suggesting she was shot live ammunition by security forces in Iran. Iranian state-run media on Monday refused to report on the incident and the government has denied using live ammunition on protesters.
“After successive national traumas in a short time period, people should be allowed to safely grieve and demand accountability,” said Hadi Ghaemi, the executive director of the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran.
“Iranians shouldn’t have to risk their lives to exercise their constitutional right to peaceful assembly.”
The crash of the Ukraine Airline early on Wednesday killed all 176 people on board, mostly Iranians and Iranian-Canadians but the Iranian government denied shooting it down claiming it was a technical failure.
After insisting for three days that the Iranian armed forces were not to blame, authorities on Saturday admitted accidentally shooting it down in the face of possible American military retaliation after firing ballistic missiles at two bases in Iraq housing US forces..
Taraneh Alidoosti, one of Iran’s most-famous actresses, posted a picture of a black square on Instagram with the caption: “We are not citizens. We are hostages. Millions of hostages.”
Saeed Maroof, the captain of Iran’s national volleyball team, also wrote on Instagram: “I wish I could be hopeful that this was the last scene of the show of deceit and lack of wisdom of these incompetents but I still know it is not.”