Witness name & surname: Withheld
The place about which he is testifying: Shahr Ghods
Witness status: Injured/arrested/witness to firing at the people
Type of testimony before the Tribunal: Withheld
I went outside on the street and saw that a crowd had gathered there. People, in groups, were shouting slogans against the rising cost of petrol. I stayed there until noon and then came back home. At night the streets became crowded and busy again. That night there was no police in our city. Only people were shouting slogans against the rising price of petrol. For instance, there were 2000 -3000 people in one street; 2000 in the next street, and 1500 or 4000 in another street. It lasted until 12:00 – 01:00 a.m. when I came home.
At sunset about 06:00 p.m. we came on to the street. There was a blackout for about 10 minutes. The entire city had plunged into darkness. When they saw that the situation was getting worse, they turned the electricity on. Now the protests were taking shape. I visited a few other places as well. There was a crowd at the 45th Street of Shahr Ghods. There were 2000 – 2500 people where I was standing. Wherever you looked at there were people with their families out there. I saw many people with their 4- 5-year-old kids; they were holding kids in their laps. There were as many women as there were men. There were gatherings in other places too like Ghods Roundabout, Ghaleh Hassan Khan (Shahr Ghods), in Sa’at Roundabout, in Avarezi Avenue, In Imam Hossein Roundabout, in Mosalla-e Shahr Ghods. Over 1500, 2000, 3000-strong crowds were scattered all over.
People were shouting slogans against the soaring price of petrol. Suddenly the Basij and Sepah forces started firing tear gas at the people. At the beginning of Ghanat in Shahr Ghods many Basij and Sepah forces started beating people with batons and sticks. People were empty-handed. Then, all of a sudden, they started firing shots at people who were running away. At 11:30 p.m. when they were firing shots, I hid behind a wall to protect myself from the tear gas. At Taleghani Avenue on the other side of the road they fired a shot at the leg of a man. (People) dragged him inside an alley. Hardly two minutes had passed when they shot at a man who was standing at a distance of 2 meters from me. When I got to him and put my hand under his head to help him get up, I saw that my hand was all bloodied. The bullet had hit him directly at his heart and he died. The Basij and Sepah forces had fired at him. They were wearing the Basij uniforms and helmets from which only their eyes and mouths could be seen. Most of them were carrying Kalashnikovs. All the forces that I saw were carrying the Kalashnikovs. There were police officers too in black uniforms, wearing casket helmets and carrying weapons. But I did not see them firing at people. It was only the Basij and Sepah forces that were firing shots at people.
When I raised that bullet-ridden man, they shot at my left foot; I fell on the dead body. People removed me and that man away from the street. The moment I was struck by the bullet and they people dragged me away, I could still hear the firing of shots at different places as they were in various groups. I could hear the burst of machine-gun. They were firing at people. That night there was too much firing noise. I said to myself: ‘O God, now they would open machine-gun fire on the people; old and young people and children would be killed. They have no mercy.’ On the night of 17 November, I only heard gun fire up to 01:00 or 02:00 a.m. They had fired at my left leg with a Kalashnikov. I did not go to the hospital for I knew that if I went there, the forces would meet me at the hospital and would take me from there to prison and would not permit me to have medical treatment. I was forced to come home with a great deal of difficulty. I was in pain for three days at home until one of my friends came there with a doctor who I did not know and who performed surgery on me at home. He gave me a lot of Ceftriaxone and Cefixime injections to prevent infection. (He removed the bullet from my leg) but the scar of the bullet is still there. On certain nights it becomes too painful. So many Ceftriaxone and Cefixime injections were given to me that it has created a weight problem for me. It has hurt my body so much.
Later I learned that the man who was struck by the bullet was Hassan Alizadeh whose father has a kebab shop at Imam Hossein Boulevard at the end of Taleghani Avenue. My close friends told me that on the night when the family was told that their son was killed, the poor father had pulled the shutter of his shop down but had not locked it. Two nights later they had put up a photograph of Hassan Alizadeh in front of his father’s shop. But the security forces came and pulled it out so no one would realize that his son was killed.
(The agents who were firing at people) were on top of buildings. There are a number of high-rise buildings at the beginning of Ghanaat; they were stationed around it and on top of it. I saw them above the mosque that is located around Mosalla Roundabout known as Imam Jafar Square. Most of them were standing at the intersection; they were standing in a straight single file and were firing shots. Ambulance was also there. People said that it was the security agents who had brought the ambulances in order to pick up the injured people, whisk them inside the ambulances and take them to prisons, not to hospitals.
After that I heard from my friends that in order to stage a power display, they came on anti-riot vehicles, motorbikes and things like. After three days they started entering inside the people’s homes. My friends said that they fired shots at the people in Avarezi Street and killed a number of them; they are now in 12th of Bahman Hospital. The 12th of Bahman Hospital was filled with security agents. They did not allow anyone to accompany those who had been struck by bullets. As far as I know and have heard, a number of people have been killed in our city. (The demonstrations) were for a total of three days. Every night the security forces showed a more violent reaction to people and openly fired (shots) at them.