Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday announced dozens of Iran-related sanctions amid mass protests that have erupted in the Middle Eastern country after a woman was killed in custody of the country's Guidance Patrol earlier this month. File Photo by Paul Hanna/UPI | License Photo
Sept. 26 (UPI) -- Canada will impose sanctions against dozens of people and entities in Iran, including its so-called morality police, as the country's regime brutally cracks down on protests that have erupted in response to the death of a young Iranian women under its custody.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the sanctions Monday during press conference in Ottawa, saying Canada was adding its voice to the millions of people worldwide who are calling on the regime of Iran's spiritual leader Ali Khamenei to end its repression of its people.
Protests have erupted nationwide in the Middle Eastern country following the Sept. 16 death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini who was arrested three days earlier by Tehran's Guidance Patrol enforcing the country's strict hijab laws.
The United Nations human rights office has said she fell into a coma shortly after she was arrested on Sept. 13 at the Vozara Detention Center, citing reports that Amini, a Kurdish minority who also went by the name Jhina, was beaten about head with batons and slammed into a vehicle by the arresting Guidance Patrol.
The Iranian officials have said she died of a heart attack.
The officials state 41 people have died amid the protests, but activists say the number is much higher with the Norway-based Iran Human Rights putting the death toll at a minimum of 76 protesters killed by security forces.
Trudeau did not list those sanctioned other than the Guidance Patrol, but said they add to "some of the toughest measures" they have previous imposed against Iran.
"To the women in Iran who are protesting and to those who are supporting you: we stand with you," he said. "We join our voices, the voices of all Canadians, to the millions of people around the world demanding that the Iranian government listen to their people, end their repression of freedom and rights and let women and all Iranians live their lives and express themselves peacefully."
The sanctions follow the United States late last week sanctioning the Guidance Patrol and seven senior leaders of Iran's security organizations.
The opposition Conservative Party of Canada has been calling on Trudeau and his administration to impose tougher measures against the Iranian regime after it shot down Flight PS752 in January 2020, specifically calling for sanctions against Iran's elite Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps.
On Monday, when asked if he was willing to blacklist the IRGC, Trudeau said that some of its members will be sanctioned.
"We have sanctioned some individuals, members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, and we are going to keep on considering anything else we can do with regard to sanctions," he said. "And again, this would include several members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, some of these members will indeed be sanctioned."