Iran abolishes morality police amid ongoing nationwide protests
Tehran: Iranian authorities have abolished the controversial morality police amid ongoing mass protests sparked by the death of a young woman in custody, media reported, citing Iranian Attorney-General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri.
Montazeri made the statement during a religious conference and was quoted by the Iranian state-run news agency ISNA, Agence France-Presse reported.
The attorney reportedly said that the morality police were not part of the judiciary and have been disbanded.
Violent riots broke out in Iran in mid-September after 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died in custody after having been detained for wearing an "improper" hijab.
Many Iranians blamed Amini's death on the controversial morality police, alleging that officers hit her in the head while interrogating.
According to the Security Council of the Iranian Interior Ministry, at least 200 people have died in riots in Iran since September, with the total damage to state bodies and private organizations exceeding $200 million.
Tehran believes the unrest has been instigated from abroad. Iranian police have arrested people believed to have been recruited by Western intelligence services, Israel and Saudi Arabia to drive the public unrest.
(With UNI inputs)