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Iran’s embattled regime hit by protests over water scarcity, Khamenei admits ‘not a minor difficulty’

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Iran’s authoritarian regime is going through recent strain from Iranian protesters over a drought within the southwest of the nation — with protesters chanting anti-government slogans simply because the regime is putting in a hardline president.

The protests, which have been happening for over per week, have taken place in numerous cities and cities within the Khuzestan area over the drought. Iran’s Fars Information Company reported that not less than one protester and police officer had been killed within the protests.

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It blamed “rioters and armed militants disguised amongst protesters” for the violence however the regime has additionally acknowledged the anger over the drought.

“Folks confirmed their discontent, however we can’t have any grievance for the reason that difficulty of water within the scorching local weather of Khuzestan just isn’t a minor difficulty,” Khamenei mentioned, though he too accused opponents of making an attempt to take advantage of the scenario..

The Human Rights Activists in Iran group says that safety forces have fired tear gasoline and water cannons, whereas Amnesty Worldwide accused the regime of utilizing reside ammunition towards protesters — describing the transfer as “horrifying.”

The Nationwide Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), an umbrella group of Iranians against the regime, mentioned the protesters had been preventing for liberation from the regime in addition to water.

“Hail to #Khuzestan’s martyrs, hail to those that have risen for water and freedom,” NCRI President-elect Maryam Rajavi tweeted. “The Iranian folks don’t have anything to lose beneath the rule of the felony mullahs; they are going to combat to the tip for his or her inalienable rights, water, bread, freedom, & the folks’s sovereignty.”

Different NCRI officers tweeted out video displaying that protests had been particularly concentrating on the regime.

The State Division, in the meantime, informed reporters that the administration was following reviews of protests in addition to web shutdowns by the regime.

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“We urge the Iranian authorities to permit its residents to train their common rights of freedom of expression in addition to freely entry data on-line,” a spokesperson mentioned.

The times-long protests are the most recent blow to an already embattled regime, which has confronted an financial downturn in recent times resulting from not solely the COVID-19 pandemic however the “most strain” coverage by the Trump administration which re-introduced sanctions on the regime that had been scrapped beneath the Iran deal.

The Biden administration has signaled an openness to rejoining the deal, and talks have been ongoing in Vienna between signatories to the 2015 deal. Nevertheless, these talks have appeared to stall, amid additional uranium enrichment in Tehran.

In the meantime, hardliner Ebrahim Raisi gained the presidential election in a contest marred by accusations of rigging and a low turnout. Raisi mentioned he wouldn’t meet with President Biden, and mentioned the elimination of sanctions by the U.S. is non-negotiable.

The Related Press contributed to this report.

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