Iran has arrested greater than 100 folks “in reference to” the suspected poisoning of a whole bunch of schoolgirls throughout the nation, in response to the state-run IRNA information company.

Citing a press release from Iran’s Inside Ministry, IRNA mentioned the folks had been “recognized, arrested and investigated” in a number of cities, together with the capital Tehran.

“Preliminary inquiries present that plenty of these folks, out of mischief or adventurism and with the purpose of shutting down school rooms and influenced by the created psychological ambiance, have taken measures akin to utilizing innocent and smelly substances,” the assertion learn.

Iran has seen a wave of suspected poisonings, carried out virtually totally at women’ faculties, in current months.

Whereas Iranian politicians have urged the women might have been focused by hardline Islamist teams, activists consider that the poisonings could also be linked to the nationwide protests that erupted final September over the dying of Mahsa Ami. Many schoolgirls have been energetic within the protests, eradicating their obligatory headscarves in school rooms, tearing up photos of Supreme Chief Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and calling for his dying.

Medics, mother and father and lecturers have accused the Iranian authorities of trying to silence the victims.

Iran’s Supreme Chief Ali Khamenei beforehand known as the suspected poisonings an “unforgivable crime” and known as for “extreme punishment” for anybody discovered accountable.

Amongst these arrested, the ministry mentioned, had been “people who’ve had hostile motives, tried to create concern and horror amongst folks and college students, shut down faculties, and created pessimism towards” the Iranian authorities.

They’d stay “below investigation till required assurances are achieved,” the assertion mentioned, including that the variety of poisoning instances at women’ faculties throughout the nation had been reducing “over the previous a number of days.”

The primary suspected poisonings occurred in November at a highschool within the metropolis of Qom which noticed 18 schoolgirls hospitalized, in response to Iranian state media.

A mom of two daughters from Qom beforehand instructed CNN that each women, who attended totally different faculties, had suffered important well being points after being poisoned.

One woman skilled nausea, shortness of breath and numbness in her left leg and proper hand whereas the opposite now had “issue strolling,” she mentioned.

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Rising alarm in Iran after report a whole bunch of schoolgirls had been poisoned

One other incident within the metropolis befell in February when greater than 100 college students from 13 faculties had been hospitalized after what Iranian state information companies described as “serial poisonings.”

Each the USA and United Nations have known as on Iranian authorities to completely examine the suspected poisonings and maintain these accountable to account.

The White Home on Monday mentioned there should be a “credible, impartial” investigation of poisonings amongst schoolgirls in Iran, suggesting it may very well be throughout the purview of the United Nations to look into the matter.

Beforehand, the Biden administration had famous Iran itself was conducting an investigation. However questioned by CNN’s Phil Mattingly on Monday, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre mentioned the state of affairs might fall throughout the mandate of the UN’s impartial fact-finding mission on Iran.

“We’re carefully following this deeply regarding state of affairs that we’re seeing in Iran,” she mentioned. “The continued poisoning of schoolgirls throughout Iran is unconscionable. There should be a reputable, impartial investigation (and) accountability for these accountable.”

She mentioned if the poisonings had been associated to current protests, it was “effectively inside” the UN fact-finding mission’s mandate.

“The likelihood that women in Iran are being probably poisoned for merely for making an attempt to get an training is shameful, it’s unacceptable,” she mentioned.

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