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Crowd protests Iranian government, woman's death in Atlanta

It marked a week of protest against Iran's government.

ATLANTA — Iranian Americans in Atlanta and supporters of their movement rallied again Saturday in downtown to draw attention to the country's religious laws and a woman who died at the hands of it, according to demonstrators.

Mahsa Amini, 22, died in Iran in the custody of the nation's morality police on Sept. 16. She was arrested, accused of violating Iran's hijab law. Police maintain she collapsed after a heart attack at the detention center while receiving training on hijab rules, however, her family dispute the claim saying she was perfectly healthy before she was arrested, local outlets report.

Her death stowed already slow-burning anger over the country's Islamic rules prompting protests in Iran. People have turned out in the hundreds in Iran, calling for the removal of the Iran leader with antigovernment protests now stretching into the United States.

On Saturday, hundreds of people marched by the Georgia Aquarium holding signs denouncing Iran's government while waiving the nation's flag. People honked their horns as the crowd took over the sidewalk.

"Stop political executions in Iran," one sign read. "Democracy, freedom, regime change in Iran," another demanded. 

It marks the second large-scale protest in a week in Atlanta. Last Saturday, crowds chanted, opposing the Iranian government outside of the CNN center.

"We don't like this government, we don't want this government, this is a dictatorship," Alpharetta resident Atousa Vair told the Associated Press last week. "There is no freedom for women, there is no freedom of practicing religion, there is no freedom of expressing ourselves - she was killed because she didn't wear the clothes that they were approving."

Iran's law requires women and girls older than nine years old to wear a headscarf in public in a way approved by the local authorities there. Iranian women are now going hijab-less in protest.

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