News Worms
News Worms

Trump Praised for Iran Dissident Support

Trump Praised for Iran Dissident Support

Among the slickly produced signs carried at the pro-government rallies were ones targeting Israel, Saudi Arabia and the U.S. Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has blamed the protests on meddling by "enemies of Iran".

Now, the backlash. For days, protesters have surged into the streets in the most impressive numbers since the Green Movement in 2009.

But they along with the hardline security establishment also warned authorities would crack down on any violence after some protesters attacked government buildings and banks.

Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department urged Iran to stop blocking online social media traffic in the country and said its citizens could set up virtual private networks to circumvent censorship.

At least three other towns near the cultural hub of Isfahan also saw violence overnight, causing the deaths of a young member of the Revolutionary Guards, a policeman and a bystander.

Official and semi-official media offered no new reports of anti-regime protests, which have claimed 21 lives in the last week.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini late Tuesday deplored "the unacceptable loss of human lives" and called on "all concerned to refrain from violence".

Hundreds of demonstrators have been arrested since the protests began Thursday in Mashhad before spreading to other parts of the country.

The Trump administration has said it is preparing to impose new sanctions on the regime if it attempts to use force to end the demonstrations.

Trump has used several Twitter posts to express support for those protesting the Iranian government.

Trump's United Nations envoy, Ambassador Nikki Haley, has called for an emergency Security Council meeting on Iran, saying the United Nations needed to speak out in support of the protesters.

Russia, which is allied with Iran in its support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, said "unacceptable" external interference was destabilizing the situation in Iran, the RIA news agency reported. It is hard for Americans to understand how much courage it takes for Iranians to do what people in this country take for granted: Even in normal times, Iranian activists who buck the corrupt status quo face arrest, torture and long stretches in fetid prison cells.

It is hypocritical and heartbreaking to see that the global community and the United Nations simply watch while peaceful protesters are being beaten and killed: no words of condemnation have been spoken. Dozens have already been killed.

As a long-time Iranian, I can tell you that the support of the USA and President Trump is invaluable to the ordinary Iranians: they feel helpless and alone in the face of the monsters who have been oppressing them for so long.

Iran does allow some labor strikes or unauthorized demonstrations to take place, like when coal miners angry over the deaths of at least 42 of their colleagues in an explosion in May confronted Rouhani during his presidential re-election campaign.

Rouhani had called on security forces to exercise restraint.

The unrest in Iran appears leaderless and focused on provincial towns and cities, with only small and sporadic protests in Tehran amid a heavy police presence.

In August 2016, the Obama administration acknowledged paying $1.3 billion to Iran for interest on a payment Iran made to the United States in the 1970s for military equipment that the USA never delivered.

Many Tehranis agreed with his assessment.

Late on Wednesday, senior Trump administration officials acknowledged their surprise that the protests took hold so quickly.

"The root of people's protests are merely their economic problems, the problem of youth unemployment", he said. "He's not going to want to waive sanctions and keep money flowing to dictators when there are people protesting in the streets", Richard Goldberg, a former Senate Republican aide who participated in designing sanctions against Iran, told Politico.

Mr Rouhani came to power in 2013 promising to mend the economy and ease social tension, but high living costs and a 12% unemployment rate have left many feeling that progress is too slow.

The young are the most affected, with as many as 40 percent jobless according to analysts, and rural areas particularly hard-hit. However, he has also vowed to crack down on "lawbreakers".

In 2009, authorities ruthlessly put down protests against the re-election of hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.


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