December 31, 2017

KNOWING YOUR ALLIES:

Iranian conservatives welcome protests, for now (Al-Monitor, December 31, 2017)

Some of the most interesting comments have been made by conservative officials and pundits who have all previously condemned protests, especially the 2009 Green Movement protests. Ahmad Tavakoli, a former parliamentarian and member of the Expediency Council, called the street protests "predictable" due to the administration's economic policies. He compared the policies to those of Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani's presidency in the 1990s; Tavakoli called them "harsh policies," presumably referring to neoliberal economic measures to cut subsidies. 

Addressing the protests that started in Mashhad, former hard-line parliament member Hamid Rasaei accused media linked to Rouhani of censoring those who are "protesting the current situation." Mehdi Mohammadi, the former adviser to Saeed Jalili, a former nuclear negotiator under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, wrote that "protesting against economic difficulties is the right of the people." Conservative analyst Vahid Yaminpour tweeted, "It has been reported that the president has called an emergency meeting. I hope that before the security and intelligence ministers give their reports on how to quiet the protesters, the economic ministers will think about how to improve the current situation."

Posted by at December 31, 2017 10:24 PM

  

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