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Iranian Street Explodes in Anger

Analysts Weigh in With Risks and Highlights

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Posted on: 
18 Nov 2019
Iranian Street Explodes in Anger
Amidst large-scale street demonstrations across Iran, which have turned violent in several cities, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei gave a live address on State TV in which he said, among other things, that “ sabotage and arson is done by hooligans not our people," and that he primarily blamed Israel, Saudi Arabia, the US and UK for stirring up resentment against his regime. However, the protests were sparked by tax increases on gasoline and other commodities, which protesters said were being made to fund the clerical regime’s support for Hezbollah and other terrorist proxy groups instead of alleviating the poor living conditions of Iranians.

The US and many other Western governments have condemned the use of lethal force against protesters in Iran, which have reportedly led to the deaths of dozens of protesters as well as some police officers, although it’s difficult to get a clear picture because internet access has been shut off in most of the country.

"The United States supports the Iranian people in their peaceful protests against the regime that is supposed to lead them," the White House said in a statement. "We condemn the lethal force and severe communications restrictions used against demonstrators."

Scatters reports out of some of the over 100 cities and villages across Iran where protesters have taken to the streets indicate that many banks have been burned by protesters, as well as buildings and facilities associated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and their Basij youth militia. Some analysts speculated that the riots were partially inspired by reports of the mass protests against the hereditary regime in Lebanon as well as in neighboring Iraq, where over 300 people were reportedly killed in clashes between demonstrators and security forces over the last month, including several more this past weekend.

Here is one of the videos of the riots circulating on social media 

Here is another video about recent events in Iran