Here’s Why Tens of Thousands of People are Protesting the Government in Iran

Here’s Why Tens of Thousands of People are Protesting the Government in Iran by Marwa Eltagouri – Washington Post

Anti-government protests in Iran, where demonstrations of political unrest are rare, have left at least 20 people dead — and do not appear to be subsiding.

Since Thursday, tens of thousands of protesters have formed the largest outpouring of government opposition since the volatile 2009 presidential elections. The scale and ferocity of the protests had clerical leaders in Tehran struggling Tuesday to respond to what is likely the most serious internal crisis the country has faced this decade.

Iran has a powerful security force, but leaders have not yet called on the Revolutionary Guard and the Basij militia, who flattened the 2009 demonstrations by killing dozens of protesters.

On Dec. 28, protests broke out in the northern city of Mashhad, spurred at first by concern over the country's stunted economy and the high prices of basic goods like eggs, which saw a 40 percent jump in price. Over the next six days, the protests in more than two dozen towns would turn into an open rebellion against Iran's Islamic leadership itself.

Protesters' chants and attacks on government buildings upended a system that had little tolerance for dissent, with some demonstrators even shouting “Death to the dictator!” — referring to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei — and asking security forces to join them, The Post's Erin Cunningham reported.

In Iran, where ruling clerics hold much of the power, some protesters are frustrated that social freedoms and political openness are being suppressed by the establishment. Working-class Iranians who want higher wages and a solution to unemployment are frustrated that the economy has been slow to grow despite the lifting of sanctions under an international nuclear deal…

Read on.

0
Your rating: None

Comments