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Iran Regime Claims Unrest Defeated, But Unjustified Imprisonment May Continue Protests

January 7, 2018 Special Feature

Will Iran leadership overcome protests?
Illustrative official meeting. Photo Courtesy of UN Photo/Evan Schneider

The most powerful security force in Iran and a close ally of the regime has claimed that the Iranian uprising has been crushed, but media reports and Twitter are implying that hasn’t happened yet. A reason for the latest outcry in Iran is due to the hundreds of people imprisoned in response to the protests, and even an Iranian student media normally friendly to the regime is crying foul. Meanwhile, the Americans continue to push for international oversight on human rights violations in Iran.

In a Sunday report, the semi-official Fars News Agency quoted a statement released by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp claiming that various security forces had “broken down the chain of unrest.” However, Farnaz Fassihi of the Wall Street Journal tweeted that as of Saturday—just one day prior to the IRGC victory claim—there were protests in more than a dozen cities and graffiti opposing Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

And that’s not all. The BBC, citing the Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA), reported that with over 1,000 arrested, reformist members of Iran’s parliament were saying 90 university students were among those taken. One parliamentarian, Mahmoud Sadeghi, said that a number of those students were not even involved in the protests.

Meanwhile, the ISNA Farsi website actually published a student organization’s letter to the Iranian Minister of Science calling for the “unconditional release” of arrested students and highlighting arrests made for “ambiguous reasons,” according to a translation of the site. That stands out since ISNA gives the appearance of generally being supportive of Ayatollah Khamenei and their website currently has a prominent image of the Supreme Leader.

Author and self-proclaimed “expelled analyst” Babak Taghvaee posted video to Twitter on Sunday saying it showed protests outside Evin Prison in the Iranian capital of Tehran after hundreds of students were arrested. The authenticity of the video is unclear at this time.

The Administration of US President Donald Trump on Saturday continued their support for Iranian protestors. US Representative to the United Nations Nikki Haley told an emergency meeting of the powerful UN Security Council that “nothing will stop” the US from standing with the protestors.

“Once again, the people of Iran are rising up. They are asking for something that no government can legitimately deny them: their human rights and fundamental freedoms. They are calling out, ‘Think of us,’” Haley told the UN body. “If the founding principles of this institution mean anything, we will not only hear their cry, we will finally answer it. The Iranian regime is now on notice. The world will be watching what you do.”

Haley again reiterated the economic concern of Iranians, saying that the people are calling upon the regime to “Stop the support for terrorism. Stop giving billions of our money to killers and dictators. Stop taking our wealth and spending it on foreign fighters and proxy wars. Think of us.”

To that end, Israeli Prime Minister’s Office Arabic Spokesman Ofir Gendelman tweeted a video of the leader of Iranian terror proxy Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, commenting on his funding in an interview with Al-Jadeed TV.

“Nasrallah, leader of Hezbollah, the richest terror org on earth that has an annual income of $1.1 billion, says he only makes $1300 a month & laugh, knowing it’s a lie. Hezbollah gets his $billion+ from Iran as well as from drug trafficking and money laundering,” tweeted the Israeli spokesman.

Gendelman followed that up with another tweet on Nasrallah’s actual annual income. “It seems Nasrallah forgot a few zeros. It’s not $1300 a month, but more likely $1,300,000 a month.”

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, January 7, 2018)

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