Kurdistan: Iranian Authorities Arrest 9 for Protesting Turkey’s Afrin Offensive
The Kurdistan Human Rights Network reports the arrest, on Tuesday 14 March 2018, of nine Kurdish protesters across five cities of the Iraqi Kurdistan region. The Kurds were arrested by Iranian authorities on Iraq’s soil following regionwide protests against Turkey’s military operation in Afrin, Syria. Several cities of the northern region of Iraq have been under increased security presence since the beginning of the week in preparation for this wave.
Below is a press release published by the Kurdistan Human Rights Network, orginally posted on Rudaw:
Iranian authorities have arrested several people protesting against Turkey’s military operation in Afrin.
At least nine people were arrested amid increased security across five cities, the France-based Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) reported on Tuesday.
The rights monitor noted there was a large security presence in the main squares of several cities on Monday ahead of planned rallies that were denied official permission.
In Kamyaran, Kurdistan province, hundreds gathered to protest in support of the civilian population of Afrin and at least one man and one woman were arrested.
Several more were arrested at a protest in front of Turkey’s embassy in Tehran while demonstrations in Sanandaj and Mariwan were dispersed.
Turkey launched its Operation Olive Branch against the Syrian Kurdish canton on January 20 . More than 200 civilians have been reported killed and Turkish forces and their allied Syrian militias are advancing to impose a siege on the main urban centre, Afrin city.
Turkey denies harming civilians.
Iran has criticized Turkey’s operation, which is taking place despite objections from Damascus.
Saying that foreign military interventions must be based on authorization from national authorities, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said last month, “We wish that Turkey’s operation in Syria will end at the earliest time.”
Tehran is an ally of the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia Commons