A man was killed Tuesday night by Iranian security forces while celebrating the Islamic Republic’s defeat to the United States at the World Cup, according to a rights group.
The national soccer team’s loss was cause for either sadness or exuberant joy for Iranians, depending on where they stand on a two-month-old protest movement.
Caught between the clerical regime and calls to show solidarity with protesters, the national team pressed near-relentlessly in the second half on Tuesday night but were unable to cancel out a 38th-minute opener by the US, resulting in an early exit.
That prompted the extraordinary spectacle of Iranians cheering a defeat inflicted by Iran’s arch-enemy, often labeled the “Great Satan.”
In the northern city of Bandar Anzali, Mehran Samak, 27, was fatally struck by a bullet, the Norway-based Iran Human Rights said. Activists cited by the BBC said Samak was shot after honking his horn.