Iran has handed down its first known death sentence in connection with mass protests that swept the country in response to the death of a 22-year-old woman while in police custody in September.

Mizan Online, the website of Iran’s Revolutionary Tribunal, reported Sunday that it had handed down a death sentence linked to “riots”.

The newspaper said the sentence was handed down for the crime of “setting fire to a government building, disturbance of public order, assembly and conspiracy to commit a crime against national security, enemy of God and corruption on earth”.

Another Tehran court sentenced five people to prison terms, ranging from five to 10 years, for “gathering and conspiracy to commit crimes against national security and disturbing public order”.

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The sentence probably marks the first death sentence in the trials of those arrested for participating in protests that have engulfed Iran in recent weeks calling for an end to clerical rule.

The Revolutionary Court was established after the Islamic revolutions of 1979 and is known for meting out harsh punishments for those who oppose Iran’s clerical rulers.

Iran has already issued indictments for hundreds of detained protesters, saying it will hold public trials for them.

Iranians protest the death of 22-year-old woman Mahsa Amini after she was arrested by the Morals Police, in Tehran on Sept. 20, 2022, in this photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside from Iran.
(AP Photo/Middle East Images, File)

The anti-government demonstrations have entered their eighth week and have been sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was arrested for allegedly violating the country’s strict women’s dress code.

Judicial authorities have announced charges against hundreds of people in other Iranian provinces. Some have been accused of “corruption on earth” and “war against God”, crimes which carry the death penalty.

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Security forces, including paramilitary Revolutionary Guard volunteers, violently put down the demonstrations, killing more than 300 people, including dozens of children, according to Oslo-based Iran Human Rights. Iranian authorities say more than 40 security forces have also been killed in the nationwide unrest.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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