Former Iran football team player challenges authorities’ ‘silence’ after death of man celebrating World Cup defeat

By Manveena Suri, Jen Deaton and Heather Chen, CNN

A former Iranian soccer player has criticized the authorities for their “silence” over the death of a man who celebrated the country’s World Cup defeat to the United States earlier this week.

Mehran Samak, 27, died in Bandar Anzali city, northern Iran, during a public celebration by anti-government protesters after Tuesday’s match – in which the US beat Iran 1-0. for advancing to the competition stage.

The Norway-based Iran Human Rights Watch alleged, citing “several independent sources,” that he was killed by security forces.

The police, however, denied that he was killed by the police and announced the arrest of several suspects in connection with his death, according to Iranian state media. Nature.

In a video posted on social media on Saturday, Mohammad Ahmadzadeh, who played for Iran from 1988 to 1990 and coached Malavan FC from 2018 to 2020, attacked the Bandar Anzali member of the group leader Ahmad Donyamali and called for accountability from the city leaders.

“Hello to all my friends from Anzali who are gone because we have lost another young man, Mehran Samak,” he said. “We have lost this beloved and all the people of Anzali have lost.”

“I don’t know what their crime is. I want to ask the city police – what is their crime? Is it a crime, a death sentence, blowing your horn or where to be happy? asked Mr. Donyamali, who considers himself the representative of this city – why are you silent? You are not the representative of this city? You have seen What about the situation so far?

The state-run Iran Student Press reported on Thursday that prosecutor Bandar Anzali had opened a case for “criminal” murder.

Several videos posted on social media on Tuesday night showed people in cities across Iran, including in the capital Tehran, celebrating in their homes after the match.

“I’m happy, this is a government lost to the people,” a witness to the celebration in a town in the Kurdish region told CNN on Wednesday. CNN did not name the witness for safety concerns.

The 1500tasvir protester also released a security video, released on Tuesday night, that opened fire on people in Behbahan and hit a woman in Qazvin. Both towns are south of Bandar Anzali where Samak is said to have been killed.

CNN cannot confirm its own information because Iran’s government does not allow foreign media to enter the country, and has not been transparent in its reporting on protests and demonstrations. in case of injury.

The protests have rocked Iran for several months, leading to a deadly crackdown by the police.

The nationwide protests were first sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian woman who died in mid-September after being arrested by the country’s police. be honest. Since then, protesters across Iran have been involved in many protests with the government.

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