World reacts after unrest in Iran kills 13_Insights_Asia Pacific Daily

To download APD News app

1. Please scan the QR Code 2. Download and install APD News App

World reacts after unrest in Iran kills 13

Insights2018-01-02

Iranian protesters attacked police stations late on Monday, Reuters reported citing local news agencies and social media, as security forces struggled to contain the boldest challenge to authorities since unrest in 2009. Videos on social media showed an intense clash in the central town of Qahderijan between security forces and protesters who were trying to occupy a police station, which was partially set ablaze. There were unconfirmed reports of several casualties among demonstrators. Meanwhile, in the western city of Kermanshah, protesters set fire to a traffic police post, but no one was hurt in the incident, Iran's Mehr news agency said. Demonstrations have continued for a fifth day. The total death toll linked to the protests currently stands at 13. It is the worst wave of unrest since people took to the streets in 2009 to condemn the re-election of then-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Picture from social media shows people protesting in Tehran, Iran, on December 30, 2017. /Reuters Photo Iranian authorities have confirmed arrests of more than 400 people since the outbreak of the unrest, of whom around 100 have been freed. The trigger: Unemployment and power rivalry President Hassan Rouhani has vowed that the nation would deal with "rioters and lawbreakers." In a televised call on Sunday, Rouhani called for calm, saying Iranians had the right to criticize but must not cause unrest. "The government will show no tolerance for those who damage public property, violate public order and create unrest in society," the president said. Reuters says unsigned statements on social media are calling Iranians to continue to demonstrate in 50 towns and cities. The country's intelligence ministry released a statement saying "rioters and instigators" have been identified "and will be dealt with seriously soon." The Revolutionary Guards published photos of three wanted people and called on the public to report any "seditionist elements". Rouhani came to power in 2013 promising to mend the economy and ease social tensions, but high living costs and a 12 percent unemployment rate have left many feeling that progress is too slow. People protest near the University of Tehran, Iran, Dec. 30, 2017 in the picture obtained from social media. /Reuters Photo Last year, the youth unemployment reached 28.8 percent. Iran is a regional power deeply involved in Syria and Iraq as part of a battle for influence with rival Saudi Arabia. Many Iranians resent those foreign interventions, and want their leaders to create jobs at home. Meanwhile, global reactions are building. Trump: 'Oppressive regimes cannot last forever' On Saturday, US President Donald Trump weighed in on the protests, warning that the country's people want change. "Oppressive regimes cannot endure forever, and the day will come when the Iranian people will face a choice," he tweeted, quoting from the speech. "The entire world understands that the good people of Iran want change, and, other than the vast military power of the United States, that Iran's people are what their leaders fear the most," Trump said, again quoting from the UN speech. "The world is watching!" Later Saturday, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence added his voice, saying: "The time has come for the regime in Tehran to end terrorist activities, corruption, & their disregard for human rights." And White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders added: "The days of America looking the other way ... are over." Israel follows US, voices support Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the "brave Iranians" taking to streets to protest a regime that "wastes tens of billions of dollars spreading hate." In a televised message on Monday, Netanyahu said Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's claim that Israel is behind the anti-government protests is not only false, but “laughable.” "And unlike Rouhani, I will not insult the Iranian people. They deserve better. Brave Iranians are pouring into the streets. They seek freedom. They seek justice. They seek the basic liberties that have been denied to them for decades," Netanyahu said. EU urges protesters' rights The EU pushed Iran on Monday to guarantee the right to protest, as authorities have moved to crack down on days of unrest across the nation. "We have been in touch with the Iranian authorities and we expect that the right to peaceful demonstration and freedom of expression will be guaranteed," a spokeswoman for EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement. "We will continue to monitor developments," the spokeswoman added. Opponents of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hold a protest outside the Iranian embassy in west London, Britain, Dec. 31, 2017. UK calls for meaningful debate Britain's foreign minister Boris Johnson on Monday called for Iran to engage in meaningful debate about issues raised by protesters, which he said were "legitimate and important." "The UK is watching events in Iran closely. We believe that there should be meaningful debate about the legitimate and important issues the protesters are raising and we look to the Iranian authorities to permit this," he said in a post on Facebook. Russia: Protests are Iran's internal affair Moscow said that Russia considers the protests in Iran a domestic situation that hopefully develops without bloodshed. "This is Iran’s internal affair… External interference destabilizing the situation is inadmissible," Russia's Foreign Ministry said in statement on Monday. (AFP)

Iranian protesters attacked police stations late on Monday, Reuters reported citing local news agencies and social media, as security forces struggled to contain the boldest challenge to authorities since unrest in 2009.

Videos on social media showed an intense clash in the central town of Qahderijan between security forces and protesters who were trying to occupy a police station, which was partially set ablaze. There were unconfirmed reports of several casualties among demonstrators.

Meanwhile, in the western city of Kermanshah, protesters set fire to a traffic police post, but no one was hurt in the incident, Iran's Mehr news agency said.

Demonstrations have continued for a fifth day. The total death toll linked to the protests currently stands at 13. It is the worst wave of unrest since people took to the streets in 2009 to condemn the re-election of then-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

 
Picture from social media shows people protesting in Tehran, Iran, on December 30, 2017. /Reuters Photo

Picture from social media shows people protesting in Tehran, Iran, on December 30, 2017. /Reuters Photo

Iranian authorities have confirmed arrests of more than 400 people since the outbreak of the unrest, of whom around 100 have been freed.

The trigger: Unemployment and power rivalry

President Hassan Rouhani has vowed that the nation would deal with "rioters and lawbreakers."

In a televised call on Sunday, Rouhani called for calm, saying Iranians had the right to criticize but must not cause unrest.

"The government will show no tolerance for those who damage public property, violate public order and create unrest in society," the president said.

Reuters says unsigned statements on social media are calling Iranians to continue to demonstrate in 50 towns and cities.

The country's intelligence ministry released a statement saying "rioters and instigators" have been identified "and will be dealt with seriously soon." The Revolutionary Guards published photos of three wanted people and called on the public to report any "seditionist elements".

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

 
People protest near the University of Tehran, Iran, Dec. 30, 2017 in the picture obtained from social media. /Reuters Photo

People protest near the University of Tehran, Iran, Dec. 30, 2017 in the picture obtained from social media. /Reuters Photo

Last year, the youth unemployment reached 28.8 percent.

Iran is a regional power deeply involved in Syria and Iraq as part of a battle for influence with rival Saudi Arabia. Many Iranians resent those foreign interventions, and want their leaders to create jobs at home.

Meanwhile, global reactions are building.

Trump: 'Oppressive regimes cannot last forever'

On Saturday, US President Donald Trump weighed in on the protests, warning that the country's people want change.

"Oppressive regimes cannot endure forever, and the day will come when the Iranian people will face a choice," he tweeted, quoting from the speech.

"The entire world understands that the good people of Iran want change, and, other than the vast military power of the United States, that Iran's people are what their leaders fear the most," Trump said, again quoting from the UN speech.

"The world is watching!"

Later Saturday, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence added his voice, saying: "The time has come for the regime in Tehran to end terrorist activities, corruption, & their disregard for human rights."

And White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders added: "The days of America looking the other way ... are over."

Israel follows US, voices support

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised the "brave Iranians" taking to streets to protest a regime that "wastes tens of billions of dollars spreading hate."

In a televised message on Monday, Netanyahu said Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's claim that Israel is behind the anti-government protests is not only false, but “laughable.”

"And unlike Rouhani, I will not insult the Iranian people. They deserve better. Brave Iranians are pouring into the streets. They seek freedom. They seek justice. They seek the basic liberties that have been denied to them for decades," Netanyahu said.

EU urges protesters' rights

The EU pushed Iran on Monday to guarantee the right to protest, as authorities have moved to crack down on days of unrest across the nation.

"We have been in touch with the Iranian authorities and we expect that the right to peaceful demonstration and freedom of expression will be guaranteed," a spokeswoman for EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement.

"We will continue to monitor developments," the spokeswoman added.

 Opponents of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hold a protest outside the Iranian embassy in west London, Britain, Dec. 31, 2017.

Opponents of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani hold a protest outside the Iranian embassy in west London, Britain, Dec. 31, 2017.

UK calls for meaningful debate

Britain's foreign minister Boris Johnson on Monday called for Iran to engage in meaningful debate about issues raised by protesters, which he said were "legitimate and important."

"The UK is watching events in Iran closely. We believe that there should be meaningful debate about the legitimate and important issues the protesters are raising and we look to the Iranian authorities to permit this," he said in a post on Facebook.

Russia: Protests are Iran's internal affair

Moscow said that Russia considers the protests in Iran a domestic situation that hopefully develops without bloodshed.

"This is Iran’s internal affair… External interference destabilizing the situation is inadmissible," Russia's Foreign Ministry said in statement on Monday.

(AFP)

Hot Recommended

  • Library designed by Daniel Wu nominated for British architecture 'Oscar'

  • 14 arrested in cross-border drug ring bust

  • China’s environment tax law takes effect in 2018

  • Women's only parking space sparks controversy in China

  • The world’s first and last places to welcome 2018

  • Highlights of President Xi's 2018 New Year Address