The Iranian regime has taken a gamble on how it responds to the very real possibility that further widespread protests against the regime break out soon. The anniversary of the most significant protests since the Iranian revolution in 1979 is just around the corner. The regime has decided to go down the road of violent repression rather than addressing the very real issues that prompt Iranians to take to the streets.
Khamenei associated the uprising with the Iranian opposition People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI / MEK Iran), so ordered a total crackdown saying the (PMOI / MEK Iran) were simply thugs. Khamenei told top security and government officials, as stated by a Reuters report. “Do whatever it takes to end it”.
#Iran: Anniversary of the November 2019 Uprising
Holding #Iranian Rulers Accountable for Crimes Against Humanity#WeStand4FreeIran #IranProtests https://t.co/vyYnoo6Kn6 pic.twitter.com/H9IpWBVV0y
— NCRI-FAC (@iran_policy) November 10, 2020
This was what Iran’s judiciary chief, Ebrahim Raisi, said last Thursday: “Prosecutors must act with power and there should be no reduction in the general prosecutor’s powers. Lawbreakers must be handled with power. We must carry out our legal duties without any intervention.”
“The issue of security is no joke. It is our red line and we will not tolerate any unlawfulness. It is the duty of all our colleagues to cooperate with security forces and all sectors to prevent thugs from doing evil things.”
Raisi’s term for genuine protesters and those who criticize the regime is “thugs.” However, after video footage of police beating up unarmed youth in public was widely screened not long ago, Raisi was forced to try and change his message. Most Iranians see the state security forces, armed police, and the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) as the real “thugs”.
“The security of citizens and the people is our red line and we will not allow thugs and people with criminal histories and thugs to endanger the security of our citizens,” was the hard-line quoted from the judiciary’s spokesperson, Gholamhossein Esmaili. By the term “citizens” Esmaili is really referring to the mullahs and regime officials themselves, as it is their security they are most concerned about. The terms “thugs” and “street gangs” are used indiscriminately for dissidents and real criminals alike.
Esmaili was interviewed by internet TV channel Edalat about the reasons for establishing a new garrison in Tehran. His reply was: “This garrison will improve coordination, will accelerate procedures, and will bring together different perspectives. It will help us gather evidence faster, and by bringing together the judges, we’ll be able to show a firmer response to these people.
146 people were arrested by security forces recently in line with the strategy of causing fear amongst the people. Hossein Rahimi, Tehran’s police chief, said that the arrests were part of the ‘power’ plan.
To counter possible unrest in those places where massive numbers of protesters were killed or arrested a year ago, there has been a significant build-up of security forces. These places include Khuzestan province where a focal point of the protests was in the city of Behbehan.
The mullahs remember that they received the harshest international blows from the Iranian Resistance during the era of appeasement, including the delisting of the PMOI/MEK, the NCRI, and the NLA from the terror lists of the U.S., and the relocation of the PMOI from Iraq. #Iran
— Maryam Rajavi (@Maryam_Rajavi) November 10, 2020
On the day of the anniversary of the November 2019 protests, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), said, “The November 2019 uprising was a manifestation of the burning determination that will continue to carry on until the mullahs’ religious dictatorship is overthrown.