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Iran declares end of deadly unrest, pro-regime rallies continue

07 Enero 2018

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a UNSC meeting on the situation in Iran, Kairat Umarov, Ambassador to the Mission of Kazakhstan to the United Nations and the president of the Security Council for the month of January, said that every member present at the meeting "supports and understands the importance of stability in Iran and the Middle East by reducing violence and preventing the emergence of new tensions".

The four independent experts appointed by the U.N. Human Rights Council said in a joint statement issued on Friday in Geneva that authorities should "exercise restraint".

There were reports of small anti-government protests in the provinces, but these could not be immediately confirmed.

High unemployment, high inflation and a deepening divide between poor and wealthy Iranians: The economic crisis in Iran is a major cause of frustration for many people.

The Trump administration is rightly concerned about the probable escalation of the crackdown, especially after the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) announced its deployment to three provinces that had been particular hotbeds of activity.

It takes a narrow-minded Obama administration apologist to miss the dismal and sobering message.

U.S. President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly tweeted his backing for Iranian protesters, wrote, "You will see great support from the United States at the appropriate time!"

The protests in Iran, which paralysed and rocked the country for almost a week, seem to be waning now.

"Egypt was disconnected from the outside world for days and yet the movement never stopped", Sultan al-Qassemi, a columnist based in the United Arab Emirates, told Al-Jazeera.

They were followed by large pro-government rallies in Tehran and a the cities of Kerman and Tabriz, all of which were widely covered by Iranian state television. On the ground in Iran, however, the unrest appears to have ebbed.

Iran's parliament is set to hold a special session as soon as Sunday to discuss the anti-government protests that began Dec. 28 and continued through this week.

The spark had been thrown into the tinder box of grievances that had been building for years over growing social inequality, hatred of the brutish security services and an increasing westernisation that scandalised the country's religious conservatives.

But on Thursday, Amnesty International stressed that "despite President Hassan Rouhani's assurance on Sunday, 30 December, 2017 that protesters have the right to criticize the government, the authorities' subsequent rhetoric has suggested they intend to respond to the unrest in an increasingly ruthless manner".

Scepticism increased when some prominent Iranian figures such as the former crown prince, Reza Pahlavi, and the Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi asked the US to increase pressure on Iran.

"And I call on the government of Iran to stop censoring the voice of the people and to restore the access to the internet". That would be a shock to the system. The head of the IRGC, Maj.

In the Shiite holy city of Qom, pro-government demonstrators chanted, "Death to American mercenaries". This rightly suggests that we are faced with a nationwide popular demand against a corrupt and rotten medieval theocracy, which is now on its last legs.

More than 1,000 students, most of whom attend Tehran University, are among those who have been detained since protesters erupted across several cities in Iran. It's a fight between a brave people who want liberty and their brutal oppressors.

Iranians are frustrated by the inability of the establishment to create any meaningful change whether at the economic or political level.