Geopolitics

Sunni cleric challenges Iran’s leaders as protests rage

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Protest over the death of Mahsa Amini, in Tehran
A police motorcycle burns during a protest over the death of Mahsa Amini, a woman who died after being arrested by the Islamic republic’s “morality police”, in Tehran, Iran September 19, 2022. WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS//File Photo

DUBAI, Oct 26 (Reuters) – A prominent Sunni cleric who directed unprecedented criticism at Iran’s supreme leader over a bloody crackdown in his hometown appeared unbowed this week by warnings from security forces, pressing his demands for more rights for his minority and voicing support for other groups in country-wide unrest.

Molavi Abdolhamid has long been a dissenting voice seeking better living standards and more political representation for the Sunni minority in the mostly Shi’ite Islamic Republic, including the Baluchi ethnic group to which he belongs and the Kurdish population. Iran’s government denies discrimination against Sunnis.

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