On November 21, 2022, 16-year-old Reza Kazemi became yet another innocent victim of the brutal crackdown on peaceful protests by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) security forces. Kazemi, a resident of the city of Muchash, was shot by the IRGC and died several days later from his injuries. A video circulated by IranWire shows Kazemi lying on the ground, covered in blood, as bystanders frantically search for an ambulance to transport him to the hospital. The individual who sent the video said that the young 16 year-old was targeted by Regime security forces.
Speaking with IranWire, a source familiar with the Kazemi shooting said that "Mochesh is a small community of 2,000-3,000 people where everyone knows one another."
On the evening of November 21, 2022, Reza was riding in a car that was returning from a nearby village. The car was stopped at a checkpoint that armed forces had set up in response to the protests in surrounding towns. IRGC forces proceeded to question those inside. Being from a small town, Reza recognized one of the agents at the checkpoint. He got out of the car, raised his hands up in the air and called the agent by name saying, “Hi, I’m Reza, son of Hassan.” In that moment, the teenager was shot at point-blank range, hitting his hands, elbow, and chest.
According to the source, local residents rushed to the scene and immediately took Reza to Kosar hospital in Sanandaj:
Mochesh is a small village, so when the sound of gunfire pierces the silence at night, everyone in can hear it. The people rushed out of their homes towards the gunfire and found that Reza had been shot. The officers had left the area and threatened Reza’s friends not to say anything.
When he was taken to the hospital, staff immediately rushed him to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). A picture has been circulated of Reza with his eyes closed and with breathing tubes hooked up to his body. On the morning of November 27, 2022, hospital staff were finding improvement in Reza’s condition. The authorities however withheld this information and would not allow staff to communicate his condition to the family this to his family. Reza later that evening died from his injuries.
Reza's family, like so many others, was subjected to immense pressure from security forces to receive his corpse under the condition of a silent and immediate burial. This common action by the Regime is a clear attempt to cover up their crimes and prevent the world from knowing the true extent of their brutality.
The family of Reza Kazemi was “silently buried at night” in the village of Mochesh.
Reza’s brother has dropped out of school, and his father swears repeatedly that his sone was innocent, did not express any particular political views, and was not someone that even participated in the protests.