- Number of deaths could be even higher
- Cleric calls the stonings ‘an act of terrorism’
- Ministry of Interior ‘complicit’ in the killings
PUBLISHED: 10:55 GMT, 10 March 2012 | UPDATED: 16:57 GMT, 10 March 2012
More than 90 Iraqi students have been stoned to death for their Emo haircuts by religious extremists in Baghdad in the past month after Iraq’s interior ministry dubbed it ‘devil worshipping’.
Iraq’s Moral Police released a statement on the interior ministry’s website condemning the ’emo phenomenon’ among Iraqi youth, declaring its intent to ‘eliminate’ the trend.
The move is part of a wider clampdown on young people taking on what government officials call ‘Western appearances’ in Iraq.
‘The Emo phenomenon or devil worshipping is being followed by the Moral Police who have the approval to eliminate [the phenomenon] as soon as possible since it’s detrimentally affecting the society and becoming a danger,’ the statement read.
‘They wear strange, tight clothes that have pictures on them such as skulls and use stationary that are shaped as skulls. They also wear rings on their noses and tongues, and do other strange activities,’.
Since the statement was published religious extremists have been harassing and killing teenagers with ‘strange’ or ’emo’ appearances.
A group of armed men dressed in civilian clothing led dozens of teenagers to secluded areas a few days ago, stoned them to death, and then disposed their bodies in garbage dumpsters across the capital, according to activists, activists told the Cairo-based al-Akhbar website.