Skip to main content

10 months since Iran's protests, Kurdish exiles in limbo

Iranian magazines Sazandegi and Andisheh report the death of Mahsa Amini
— Arbil (Iraq) (AFP)

Like other Iranian Kurds who fled into exile during last year's women-led mass protests, 17-year-old Sarina tries to keep a low profile in her new home in northern Iraq.

She avoids drawing attention in her waitress job and hides her face behind a Covid mask when she walks the streets of Arbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan.

The teenager -- who asked not to be fully identified citing security fears -- was among the thousands who joined the wave of street protests sparked by the September death of Mahsa Amini.

Anger flared after the 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian died in morality police custody after her arrest for allegedly flouting the strict Islamic dress code for women.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 for annual access.