IRAN ON EDGE: Tehran ARRESTS THOUSANDS as Regime Hangs On

11 Enero, 2018, 00:52 | Author: Kelly Blake
  • Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was apprehended during a visit to the western city of Busehehr on December 28 according to Al Quds Al-Arabi

Lawmakers backed the measure by a vote of 415 to two.

It is in this context that Washington's response to the recent wave of protests against the government in Tehran must be understood, even though said protests - at least initially - have been rooted in legitimate grievances; grievances which the country's president, Hassan Rouhani, has readily admitted to.

"With the passage of this resolution, we state that America stands with the Iranian people", Representative Ed Royce, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said.

The protests have since dwindled amid arrests of more than 3,700 people, according to one Iranian lawmaker.

The protests, which vented anger at high unemployment and official corruption, were the largest seen in Iran since the disputed 2009 presidential election, and some demonstrators called for the overthrow of the government.

While Iranian authorities insist the demonstrations are coming to an end, the protests continue in towns and cities across the Islamic Republic.

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Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Tuesday also blamed "Americans and Zionists" for the protests, saying money supporting them came from "one of the filthy-rich governments of the Persian Gulf".

USA lawmakers said Tuesday the resolution was not an attempt to target the Iranian people.

"In standing with the Iranian people, we must explain that they are not the target of our sanctions", Royce said.

President Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed their support towards the demonstrators, saying Iran was "finally" fighting for freedom against the oppressive regime. Unlike the Obama administration, we refuse to turn our backs on the Iranian regime's destabilizing practices and disrespect for the human rights, civil liberties and free speech of its people. Lawmakers are likely to find a middle-ground solution that would address Trump's concerns about the deal while preserving it and, thus, avoid the significant global consequences of a withdrawal. He also urged the UK's "friends in the White House not to throw away" a nuclear deal with Iran that Trump has pledged to decertify. Human rights activists are now concerned about protesters dying in prison.

The window for congressional action on those limitations closes in March.

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