Independent Iranian media is reporting that the leader of Hezbollah is trying to cast doubt on the death of a young woman in police custody that triggered the recent massive protests in Iran. According to the Iran International report, Hassan Nasrallah alleged that an unidentified “plot” to weaken Iran was to blame:
October 6, 2022 Iranian officials have been trying to question whether Mahsa Amini was killed in police custody and this attempt has reached Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. Nasrallah, whose militant movement was created by Iran in early 1980s and has been receiving money and weapons from Iran ever since, told media in Lebanon that Amini’s death was a “vague incident”, and it was a plot to weaken the Islamic Republic and create regional tensions. “The Iranian state is a target and so any incident is exploited to incite people against this state,” Nasrallah claimed. The nationwide protests and a wave of civil disobedience that followed Amini’s death has led to a serious challenge for the Islamic Republic. Security forces have killed more than 150 protesters and innocent onlookers in the streets, which could fuel more unrest in the coming weeks. Any weakening of the Iranian regime would be dangerous to its proxies, such as the Hezbollah that almost fully depend on Tehran’s support. Iranian officials first tried to argue that the 22-year-old woman arrested by the hijab police had an existing illness, which they said caused her to go into a coma in a police station. After Iran International published her hospital CT scan showing a broken skull, this version could not be supported any longer.
Read the rest here.
Hezbollah is a Lebanese Shia Islamist political party and militant group traditionally aligned with Iran. Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei blamed the US and Israel for the anti-government protests, saying “riots” had been “engineered” by Iran’s arch-enemies and their allies, and alleged that Qurans had been burned.