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Investigation Underway Into Attempted Suicide by Iranian Detained in Vienna

Investigation Underway Into Attempted  Suicide by Iranian Detained in Vienna Investigation Underway Into Attempted  Suicide by Iranian Detained in Vienna

Iran’s Embassy in Vienna said on Sunday that it is pursuing the case of an Iranian who has been hospitalized with serious injuries after setting fire to the deportation cell in which he was being held in the Austrian capital.    

Late on Friday, the Iranian set alight the mattresses and bedding of the cell along with five Afghan detainees, who also are in critical condition, AP reported, citing Vienna police.

They tried to block the cell door with a locker and left a joint farewell note expressing anguish about their imminent deportations.

Officers were able to force open the cell and some 70 firefighters tackled the blaze, police said.

The Iranian diplomatic mission lamented the incident and asked Austrian authorities to follow up on the case.    

The men, ranging in age from 18 to 31, are in intensive care. Fourteen other people, including at least three police officers, were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation.

Austria's government, which includes the far-right Freedom Party, has pledged to step up immigration deportations since coming to power last year.  

  Incident in Germany

In a separate incident on Friday night, a 26-year-old Iranian man suffered a laceration to the head after members of a group of self-described "vigilantes" approached a group of foreigners at a park in the German city of Chemnitz and hurled xenophobic insults at them, according to Deutsche Welle.  

Police later arrived and arrested the group. Nine of the suspected assailants were eventually released, while six others remained in custody as the investigation proceeds. One of the men already had a suspended sentence at the time of the arrest.

Chemnitz has been a battleground of protests and counterprotests since three foreigners were thought to be involved in the death of a 35-year-old German-Cuban man during a street festival.

The fatal stabbing triggered far-right riots, which led to a national debate about xenophobia in Germany and police response to far-right violence.  

 

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