KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Many University of Tennessee students came together on Wednesday to rally in support of those protesting in Iran and to make sure that those still in Iran have their voices heard. Around the world, there have been many rallies in support of the Iranians protesting the human rights violations by the current regime.
Prison and death are two of the biggest storylines coming out of Iran over the last few months following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. The protests then spread across Iran with the people seeking to have their voices heard.
“This actually started 70 days ago by killing a woman because of not covering her hair properly,” Ph.D. student Mashid said. “They then started killing minorities, different people with different religions, women, and kids.”
Mashid and others say they have concerns for the children who have apparently been killed as a result of the protests in Iran for freedom.
“So many children underage that got killed it’s all because of freedom,” Farhad Momtaz said. “It’s all because of freedom, they want their freedom. Ladies, women want their freedom and even men want their freedom, but it’s not there.”
Although the turmoil is happening on the other side of the world, it is personally impacting some people here in East Tennessee.
“When you leave your country and you come out here to study, you still have a lot of family back home,” UT student Tobe said. “So, whatever is happening to your country is happening to your family and whatever is happening to your family is happening to you. Ultimately, everyone is wanting to go back home at some point.”
Word from those that are in Iran protesting say they are thankful for the support from other countries.
“I talked with my friends in Iran and they really appreciate it,” UT Ph.D. student Mohammad said. “It sent them a lot of energy because their voices are being heard here by other countries and other people.”
He continued by saying that it made him emotional because they can hear our voices and that it is really helpful.
Some moving scenes from the rally Wednesday include people sitting on the ground representing the victims killed because of the protests. They were holding signs claiming the Iranian Government had them killed. One man even had his hands tied to a flag pole to demonstrate the torture of citizens.