Iran Daily: Regime — We Have Broken the Protests

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Iran’s regime proclaimed on Sunday that it has broken protests which have surged across the country since December 28, declaring that “the main plotters of recent scattered riots…have been identified and arrested”.

Gen. Saeed Montazer al-Mahdi (pictured), a high-ranking official in Iran’s police, said on Sunday that a few “deceived elements” and “rioters” had breached security and damaged private and public property, but “the people and protesters who had rightful demands were separated in the minimum time possible from the organizers and those directing and the violators were identified and arrested”.

Al-Mahdi revised the official death toll to 20, including a police officer. He said detainees included those who steered a fire engine into a crowd in Doroud in western Iran, killing a father and son, and “those who disrespected Iran’s national flag”.

More than 1,800 people have been detained at some point during the demonstration, but al-Mahdi said only the “main culprits and saboteurs” were now held.

The regime, which initially did not acknowledge the demonstrations, has been anxious to portray them as solely over economic issues. That framing ignores political and social demands, including criticism of the Supreme Leader to the point of tearing down his posters and chanting “Death to the Dictator”. Protests have also challenged Iran’s interventions throughout the Middle East, including in the Syrian civil war, in Lebanon alongside Hezbollah, and in Gaza.

For several days, Iranian officials, including the commanders of the Revolutionary Guards, have declared the end of protests. However, there was footage of demonstrations in at least nine cities on Saturday despite the regime’s restrictions on communications.

EU Requests Meeting with Zarif Over Protests

The European Union has requested a discussion with Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif over the protests and the regime’s response.

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said on TV on Sunday, “Together with the EU’s Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini, we agreed to invite the Iranian foreign minister, if possible next week.”

The EU has raised human rights concerns over the regime’s actions, including detention and disruptions of communications, while calling on all sides to refrain from violence.

However, with the exception of Britain, European countries in the UN Security Council were cautious last Friday about expressing condemnation through a US-drafted resolution.

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23 COMMENTS

  1. Iran’s Supreme Leader claims gender equality is ‘Zionist plot’ aiming to corrupt role of women in society http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/iran-supreme-leader-ayatollah-khamenei-gender-equality-women-zionist-plot-society-role-islamic-a7641041.html
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    Iran Bans English in Primary Schools to Block ‘Cultural Invasion’ https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/07/world/middleeast/iran-english-schools.html
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    Signs you’re bankrupt? when things you do are against rather than for

    • “Iran’s Supreme Leader claims gender equality is ‘Zionist plot’ aiming to corrupt role of women in society”

      It is a plot but not zionist. The obnoxious gender ideology is being pushed heavily by the UN and the globalitarian financial institutions (IMF, World Bank, etc).

    • But but but, we were told Muslims are so progressive and Prophet Mohammad (P.A.E.D.O.) emancipated women and destroyed ignorance. What happened? Western Islam loving leftists – a bunch of gullible and intellectually challenged losers. Are you ready for the “World Hijab Day” in solidarity with Muslim women who resist imperialism and hegemony? Surely Iranian women taking off their hijab are being manipulated by the CIA, as Robert Fisk has ‘proven’.

  2. “The regime, which initially did not acknowledge the demonstrations, has been anxious to portray them as solely over economic issues. That framing ignores political and social demands, including criticism of the Supreme Leader to the point of tearing down his posters and chanting “Death to the Dictator”. Protests have also challenged Iran’s interventions throughout the Middle East, including in the Syrian civil war, in Lebanon alongside Hezbollah, and in Gaza.”

    No. Authorities have acknowledged that “anti-revolutionary” and “anti-Islam” slogans have been chanted and have blamed this on elements linked to the MKO and to monarchist groups backed by foreign intel:

    “State media outlets have claimed that the protest leaders were either members of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran, an exiled dissident group that backs the overthrow of the Islamic Republic, or monarchists.” https://www.rferl.org/a/iran-protests-zarif-warns-foreigners-eu-trump-gabriel/28962792.html

    As well as slogans chanted in support of past Iranian dictators, racist slogans were also chanted in Khorramabad: “We are Aryans, we don’t accept Arabs!” which even the BBC’s Bahman Kalbasi found disgusting: https://twitter.com/BahmanKalbasi/status/94716477477686

    • As your comment bears out, regime propaganda has failed to acknowledge the political and social issues raised by the protesters, but avoided them by blaming the “MKO” and “monarchists”.

      Those who are portrayed as legitimate protesters — though duped by outsiders — are linked only to economic issues.

  3. It is worth noting that after 10 days of protests and riots:

    1. Not one member of the security forces has resigned.
    2. Not one official has resigned.
    3. Not one diplomat has defected.
    4. Not one strike has taken place.

    The protests have, bizzarely, helped to unite the rival factions within the Islamic Republic like never before. Reformists, in particular, have gained a lot of traction by refusing to back the protests and also condemning the violence of the rioters. Ayatollah Khamenei is expected to give a speech tomorrow: https://twitter.com/fresh_sadegh/status/950126213904945153

      • I’m not gloating. Obviously, there will be those who claim he was murdered. An investigation is required, as was held at Kahrizak. Fortunately, there is accountability in Iran unlike in other countries.

  4. “The regime, which initially did not acknowledge the demonstrations.”

    Nonsense. News media covered the reports of the demonstrations in Mashhad (in Persian).

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