Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) sharply criticized the Iranian leadership in view of the serious human rights violations in the country.

“What kind of government are you that shoots at its own citizens? Anyone who acts like this must count on our resistance,” he said in his video podcast published on Saturday. Scholz was responding to previously made Iranian threats. Iran’s Foreign Minister Hussein Amirabdollahian had threatened consequences for Germany’s position on the issue.

Scholz commented on the protests in Iran that have been going on for weeks, the violent crackdown on demonstrators, arrests and death sentences. See what is happening in the streets, in the lecture halls and in the courtrooms. “We see the struggle for freedom and justice. And: We see Iranian drones attacking and killing Ukrainian cities. All of this is totally unacceptable.”

He reiterated that there should be more EU sanctions against Iran. The EU states had agreed on this on Friday. Words alone were not enough, “in view of the brutality and contempt for human beings”. The EU has already passed several packages of sanctions. “Further sanctions are to be added next week. We want to further increase the pressure on the Revolutionary Guards and the political leadership.”

In Iran, people have been protesting against the government and the Islamic system of rule since mid-September. The trigger was the death of the 22-year-old Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini in police custody. The morality police had arrested her because, according to her, the young woman had violated Islamic dress codes.