“What we witnessed in the past weeks was beyond common [peaceful] protests. Our Constitution protects people’s right to peaceful demonstrations and assembly. However, according to the Constitution, there is a mechanism for protests, but we witnessed that the protests turned into violent riots,” Hadi Tahan-Nazif told reporters on Saturday when asked about recent riots in some cities following the death of a young Iranian woman at a police station late last month.
He further hailed people’s vigilance vis-à-vis enemy plots to stoke unrest in the country, noting that thanks to people’s vigilance, the enemy tasted yet another defeat.
Elsewhere in his remarks, the spokesman called on all to respect the law, adding that respecting the law is a vital step to addressing problems.
Protests over the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian woman who fainted at a police station and was pronounced dead at a Tehran hospital on September 16, erupted first in her native province of Kordestan and later in several cities, including the capital Tehran.
The protests soon turned into violent riots, with rioters going on the rampage across the country, attacking security officers, resorting to vandalism against public property, and desecrating religious sanctities.
Immediately after Amini’s death, Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi ordered a thorough investigation into the case.
Iranian Intelligence Ministry announced last Friday that the rioters had been backed by Western regimes and their mercenary media, who disseminated misinformation and distorted the sequence of events that led to Amini’s death even before the official investigation into the incident concludes.