Poison attacks hit at least 26 girls' schools in Iran on Wednesday

© Observers

Iranian officials have said they are investigating the mysterious poisonings of schoolgirls around the country over the past three months. One official has blamed the attacks on unspecified groups opposed to education for girls, but many Iranians believe that the state is itself behind these “chemical attacks”, to intimidate women and girls and keep them at home and out of school. Photos and videos shared online show the impacts of these widespread attacks, resulting in as many as 800 poisonings.

In Iran, hundreds of schoolgirls have reportedly been poisoned in mysterious attacks that have left them with symptoms ranging from headaches, dizziness, nausea, fainting and even loss of control of their limbs.

On Wednesday alone, poisonings were reported at approximately 26 schools across Iran. This data is according to amateur videos and published reports analysed by the FRANCE 24 Observers, and is the highest number of attacks in one day so far.

The attacks have impacted at least 800 people over the span of three months, according to BBC Persian. Girls have fallen sick in cities across Iran, including Qom, Tehran, Borujerd, Qazvin and Ardabil.

The first poisonings occurred in Qom, a holy city in Shi’a Islam, on November 30, 2022, when 18 students of the Nour Technical School were hospitalised. More than 10 other girls’ schools have been impacted in the region since then.

Similar incidents were recorded in Pardis and Borujerd in late February. In Borujerd, a small town in western Iran, 194 girls were reportedly poisoned in the span of just a week.

On February 28, 35 students from the Khayyam Girls’ School in Pardis were hospitalised.

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