The candlelight vigil for victims of the downed airliner became angry riots denouncing the government that show no signs of slowing down.
Tear gas is being fired, gunshots have been heard. Some reports of live rounds being fired into the crowds have been claimed, and are being denied by the government. (Then again, they denied downing the passenger jet too. So what is their word REALLY worth?)
A full picture of protests inside Iran is difficult to obtain because of restrictions on independent media. But videos uploaded to the internet showed scores, possibly hundreds, of protesters on Monday at sites in Tehran and Isfahan, a major city south of the capital.
“They killed our elites and replaced them with clerics,” they chanted outside a Tehran university, referring to Iranian students returning to studies in Canada who were on the plane.
Videos posted late on Sunday recorded the gunfire around protests in Tehran’s Azadi Square. Wounded were being carried and men who seemed to be security personnel ran as they gripped rifles. Riot police hit protesters with batons as people shouted “Don’t beat them!”
“Death to the dictator,” other footage showed protesters shouting, directing their fury directly at Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader since 1989.
Reuters could not immediately verify the footage. State-affiliated media has reported the protests in Tehran and other cities but without all the details from the uploaded videos.
With the freedoms we all enjoy here, it’s easy to forget just how risky a play speaking out against these SOBs can really be.
If they don’t feel constrained by International Law, why would they worry about what the world thinks about how they treat their own citizens?
Here they are arresting a British ambassador for snapping pics of the (historic) protests.
The Foreign Office has hit out at Iran for a ‘flagrant violation of international law’ after the UK ambassador to the country was arrested during a protest in the capital Tehran.
Diplomat Rob Macaire was present during demonstrations against Ayatollah Khamenei in front of Tehran’s Amir Kabir University and was arrested after allegedly ‘organising, provoking and directing radical actions’, according to local reports.
…In a strongly worded statement, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab warned Iran that it needed to make a choice between becoming a ‘pariah’ state or to ‘deescalate tensions’ with the west.
‘The arrest of our Ambassador in Tehran without grounds or explanation is a flagrant violation of international law. The Iranian government is at a cross-roads moment,’ said Mr Raab.
‘It can continue its march towards pariah status with all the political and economic isolation that entails, or take steps to deescalate tensions and engage in a diplomatic path forwards.’
Here’s how they were handling their own protesters just last year:
WATCH: Iran government/IRGC murdered 1,000 protesters a few months ago.@BernieSanders wants to "normalize relations" with this regime.
"IRGC tracked them down… with machine guns mounted on trucks… sprayed the protesters with bullets… screams of the victims can be heard." pic.twitter.com/CZ9UHI6qfE
— Steven Cheung (@CaliforniaPanda) January 13, 2020
The corresponding numbers:
?? Iran protests in past two months:
1,500 protesters killed by regime
?? Reaction from U.N. Human Rights Council:
0 urgent sessions
0 commissions of inquiry
— Hillel Neuer (@HillelNeuer) January 13, 2020
Since the downed passenger plane, Iran’s protesters have directed their ire AWAY from Americans and Jews — note how few people are walking on the flags painted on this street:
AMAZING! Iranian protesters in Tehran REFUSE to trample Israel & US flags.
We are not their enemy. ❤️ #Iran pic.twitter.com/on8TIs9xes
— Hananya Naftali (@HananyaNaftali) January 12, 2020
Heartwarming, isn’t it? This generation is the future of their nation. And if these protests take hold… maybe a future that comes sooner than we had ever expected.
Here’s where their anger has been directed, instead:
?Here is Iran.
Iranian protesters tear photos of Qassem Soleimani. This is the real voice of the Iranian people.#IranProtests #IranProtests2020 pic.twitter.com/5fQgi7CjPW
— Mohammad Mozafari (@mohmd_mozafari) January 12, 2020
Check out how popular Soleimani is in Iran:
Protesters burn a billboard with Soleimani on it and chant:
“Soleimani and his leader Khamenei are killers” pic.twitter.com/5lwEsPxQbm
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) January 12, 2020
They are paying a price for speaking out.
12 January 2020, Professor Moin’s subway station, Tehran, Iran: Don’t be scared, don’t be scared, we are all together. (Protesters toward each other) #IranProtests2020 pic.twitter.com/7xF9JveoHE
— Mojdeh (@hddjbdhbehbajdj) January 12, 2020
Iran tear gassing student protesters in Tehran https://t.co/2OgZLrhmMQ
— Jack Posobiec ?? (@JackPosobiec) January 11, 2020
#IranProtests Day 3:
Outside of Sharif University of Technology in Tehran.
"They killed the elite and replaced it with mullahs.”pic.twitter.com/7BGFRPi3s2
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) January 13, 2020
Video of security forces using tear gas to disperse protesters in #Iran. There have also been reports of tear gas being used at subway stops & of people being shot. #IranProtests pic.twitter.com/LVGuGcIG7L
— Jason Brodsky (@JasonMBrodsky) January 12, 2020
The caption reads:
“Inhuman and cruel act, throwing tear gas into the subway !!!” https://t.co/ifGMNSiDbD
— [Redacted] (@thebleepstate) January 13, 2020
Revolutionary Guard shoots again at #protesters in #Teheran! @SecPompeo @tagesschau_eil @UNHumanRights @UN @AmnestyIran @NatalieAmiri #IranProtests2020 #PS572 #Iran pic.twitter.com/8AO1hiM4oV
— freeiran (@freeira55152704) January 12, 2020
Our blood is spilling over the streets, but crazy Nancy says it's not, only thinks about party struggles and opposition to President Trump and help the mullahs' regime! Shame on the liar Nancy!#NancyPelosiFakeNews#IranProtests#IranProtests2020 https://t.co/FRjUVypjDG
— پولک (@pooolack) January 13, 2020