16-year-old Armita Geravand has passed away from injuries suffered after a confrontation with the Iranian morality police due to an alleged violation of the nation’s hijab law earlier this month, as reported by Iran’s IRNA news agency on Saturday.
Her arrest reportedly occurred on Oct. 1 when the art student was entering a subway at the Shohada metro station without wearing a head covering. Witnesses report that Geravand was approached by a police officer inside the train and injured her head after a physical altercation. She was later taken by medical personnel to the Fajr Air Force Hospital with what an emergency room source said was a “head trauma.” She was declared by physicians to be brain dead last week.
Officials in Iran denied that any struggle with the police took place, and that the teenager fell and hit her head due to “low blood pressure” from not eating breakfast that morning.
Geravand’s funeral was held Sunday in Tehran under the tight control of regime officials, despite reports that her family wanted to bury her in their hometown of Kermanshah, in the country’s heavily Kurdish western region.
Another state media outlet, the Fars News Agency, reported on Sunday that the lawyer representing Geravand, Nasrin Sotoudeh, was arrested at the funeral for attending with her head uncovered.
U.S. National Security advisor Jake Sullivan offered his condolences to the family saying, “I am deeply saddened to learn that Amita Geravand has died after being beaten by Iran’s morality police for not wearing a hijab in public. Iran’s state sponsored violence against its own people is appalling and underscores the fragility of the regime.”
The student’s passing came a year after the 2022 in-custody death Kurdish-Iranian Mahsa Amini for allegedly wearing her hijab improperly. Like the recent victim, Amini was reported to have suffered serious head injuries at the hands of her arresting authorities.