Protesters gather for second time in a week to demand accountability for Iran plane crash

Thirty protestors gather at event

Protestors gathered at University and Union on Thursday afternoon.
Protestors gathered at University and Union on Thursday afternoon.

For the second time in a week, protestors gathered on the corner of University and Union to stand in solidarity with Iranian community members.

The Iranian Student Association of Queen’s University (ISAQU) hosted a protest on Jan. 16 to demand answers and accountability from the Iranian government for the victims of the PS752 plane crash, which occurred on Jan. 8. The ISAQU hosted its first protest on Jan. 9 to rally against U.S. military escalation with Iran.

Among the 63 Canadians killed in the flight was Queen’s student Amir Moradi (ArtSci ‘21), who was studying biotechnology with the goal of becoming a doctor.

“No human error, no human cost,” a crowd of 30 chanted Thursday.

On Jan. 11, the Iranian government said Flight PS752 was shot down by mistake, but questions surrounding the intentions behind the attack were questioned at the protest.

“We’re still thinking that it was intentional,” Sia Pourzeynali (Sci ‘19) said. “We would like to know if there was anything behind the curtains that we are not aware of right now.”

According to Pourzeyanli, the protest aimed to raise more awareness of the need for government accountability, and to reach out to different sources on campus for the issue to be investigated.

“I think we all deserve to know,” he said.

Following Iran’s admission to the downing of the plane, protests erupted in Tehran and police fired teargas at thousands of protesters in response.

“The government has no problem responding with violence,” Yasi Shahidi, Vice-President of ISAQU said. “In the last few days, student protesters [in Iran] were shot at.”

Those who attended Thursday’s event also sang a famous Iranian protest song in Farsi. According to Shahidi, the song is commonly sung at university protests in Iran.

“It’s about a university student who was killed in a protest,” she later wrote in a statement to The Journal. “It’s a song of remembrance about people killed in protests.”

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