Rutte: Violence against demonstrators in Iran should not go unpunished
Mark Rutte said he finds it "unacceptable that peaceful demonstrators have been sentenced to death" in Iran. "The Iranian regime’s actions must not go unpunished," the prime minister wrote on Twitter. Thousands of demonstrators have been arrested in the country and several have been sentenced to death.
In Iran, people have been taking to the streets since mid-September to demand more freedom in the wake of the death of Mahsa Amini. She was arrested by the morality police because she did not properly cover her hair. Since then, more women without headscarves have taken to the streets, even though the Iranian authorities are cracking down.
"The courage shown by Iranian women has been incredible," Rutte wrote. He pointed to sanctions that the European Union has imposed against Iranian rulers "partly at NL’s instigation.” The prime minister concluded his tweet with the hashtag #MahsaAmini.
The government has often drawn attention to the position of women, violence against demonstrators and human rights in Iran. Last month, Foreign Affairs Minister Wopke Hoekstra called for a "thorough investigation into the illegal use of force” by the Iranian authorities. Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration Eric van der Burg said last weekend that he had the "highest form of admiration" for women of the Iranian national basketball team who took off their headscarves.
Reporting by ANP