Witness name and surname: Withheld

Sex: Male

The place about which he is testifying: Kermanshah

Witness status: Injured, Witnessed to firing at people

Type of testimony before the Tribunal: Withheld  



On 16 November, We were at the Azadi Square on Saturday at 10:00 p.m. All streets were blocked as private cars had stopped on the streets. However, the Special Unit vehicles opened the street and from the Maidan Baar, Kermanshah, where the Special Unit of Kermanshah is located, were able to get to Azadi Square. The Special Unit water-cannon started to spray water on the people in the cold weather. When people saw this, they started to throw stones breaking the guard rails in the middle of the street. Then the Special Unit formally and openly started firing shots at people, without issuing any warning. In less than 2-3 minutes tension rose to a high pitch. The entire Azadi Square of Kermanshah became filled with smoke and tear gas.


At the beginning they started using batons to disperse women and children. They would start to beat the hell out of a woman who was barely able even to walk. They would shout: ‘What are you doing here, move, go on.’ They would hit her with baton seven eight times or we would go and save her from the batons, or the (officer) would feel sorry for her after hitting her several times and would let her go. They showed no mercy to men when they caught one. They would storm him and would take him away or would beat the hell out of him. Hitting with batons was like breeze. If those hit by pellets fell in people’s hand, they were lucky; otherwise, if they went to the hospital, God alone could have saved them.


(The Special Unit forces) were wearing black uniforms. All of them wore hats with protective gear. A number of them held shields in their hands and wore the Special Unit’s black uniforms. I believe the only thing you could see (on their uniforms) was the flag of Iran. I didn’t see anything else. But everyone recognizes the black water-cannons of the Special Unit. There was a logo on the vehicle which looked like the dome of the police within which there are a few ears of wheat. All Special Unit’s men had covered their faces. We too had covered our faces. The captains of the Special Unit were in the first line of the Special Unit and whenever the people stormed them, they would retreat and those carrying shields would come forward in order to prevent weapons falling in people’s hands.


[I] went close to the Special Unit and threw one tear gas bullet towards the Special Unit. Suddenly I felt something exploding in front of me, as if it was eklil suranj{Lead tetroxide + Oct-Aluminium}. I thought it was something like that and paid no attention to it. I continued my activities. I felt that I could not walk; I had pain. It started to burn on my both thighs towards the knees and became painful after 10 minutes. I pulled up my pants and saw that I was bleeding. Initially I did not realize what had happened as I was in the thick of things and had paid no attention at all. I saw that many pellets had hit me from the waist below and I could no longer walk. My friend helped and informed others and I returned home. About 12:00 p.m., before my pain began, there was someone within the crowd. The hem of his coat had gone up and one pepper spray and a shocker could be seen around his waist. We started shouting and telling people about him. People stormed him. His appearance clearly showed that he was an intelligence man. He had a small beard; his coat, pants and appearance were all that of typical intelligence men. People charged at him. He pleaded and somehow saved himself. When people asked why he was carrying those things, he said: ‘I don’t know; I am a security guard of the amusement park.’ People kicked him seven eight times and let him go. In that chaos and riot I saw that they were firing in the air. They would aim at people’s face and head and shoot directly without the least hesitation.  


About 8-9 pellets had hit my body and the pellets are still inside me. I did not dare go to the hospital and have them removed. The same day before they brought the injured people and the hospital became overcrowded, I went there and had my CT scan done. As soon as it was done and I came out of the hospital, I saw that the Special Unit’s vehicle had come to hospital together with a number of men and some special police went inside. When they were finished with me, I saw that they had brought three four carloads of injured people. One was hit by the pellet in his eye and he was on a wheelchair. He said that he was going to see the doctor. He said that he was just passing by; he was not a protester or anything like that. They had emptied their pellets on his face; his eye was also hit by a pellet. One of his eyes had certainly become blind. The hospital has security and the files have to pass through the security. Certainly, the information about those who were in the hospital had fallen in the hands of police and Sepah.  The physician who was the reason that my file was not opened in the hospital said that after I left, a flood of those who were injured, were hit by pellets or batons, or whose heads were cracked by batons, etc. had begun. It was rumoured that the Hospital had no empty beds and was not admitting new patients. The way the police stormed the hospital and opened a file against anyone who was there on any pretext or conducted initial interrogation or opened a general file (it seems that) they had spared no one. I heard that 70-80 persons (were killed in the entire city).


When I was shot at, (those firing) stood at a distance of no more than 50 meters. Many people would rush towards the Special Unit and they would fire tear gas. When I went to pick up the tear gas (canister), the gap between us was short. The Azadi Square of Kermanshah is not very large; I cannot say that they fired from a long distance. I myself was hit by the pellets and I also saw those who were hit by the pellets or bullets. I was lucky to be one of those who were first shot below the waist; the others were all shot above the waist. That is, they were shot at their faces and chests. They had no pity. From the direction of the Special Unit they fired at people with black guns similar to Winchester that uses pellets. I have X-ray images of my legs; the pellets are still in my legs inside both thighs and the right knee. I did not see war bullets, but I saw Winchesters openly, a sea of them.  


Those who were caught by the forces were thoroughly beaten up to the minivans or other vehicles they had and there they were handed over to others who were standing beside their buses or minivans and they would take them away.


On 17 November, The next day I only heard from others as I was not present in person. I heard that in the neighbourhoods, such as Dowlatabad, people had stormed the military and police posts and the Special Unit had joined the action in those neighbourhoods; or in Javanroud they openly fired at people from the rooftops. On Sunday I could hear the sound of shots from inside the house. The protests continued for three days sporadically in neighbourhoods such as Dowlatabad and Vakilabad, but the main event was on Saturday and Sunday when the Internet was shut down and it was not possible (for people) to coordinate with each other and assemble.