A huge protest that took place in the Iranian city of Isfahan on Friday against worsening economic conditions and water shortages included boos against the country’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and opposition to Iran’s pro-Palestinian policies in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

The London-based news organization Iran International showed video footage of Iranians expressing disgust with Khamenei’s regime and the clerics who rule the theocratic state.

The video “shows protesters booing when the speaker wishes health for Ali Khamenei, “ tweeted Iran International, adding in a second tweet “Thousands of Iranian people have joined the protest gathering of farmers on the dry bed of Zayandeh Roud to voice their anger after the city’s lifeblood river dried up. Footage shows protesters chanting slogans against authorities and clerics ruling Iran.”

Iran International reported that “on the second anniversary of the Islamic Republic’s brutal crackdown on Iran’s 2019 protests, a citizen of Isfahan has changed the street sign ‘Martyrs of Gaza’ into ‘Martyrs of Nov. 2019.’’

Iran’s regime murdered an estimated 1,500 Iranians, according to Reuters, during the 2019 protests against rising gas prices and economic and political corruption from the mullah state.

Thousands of Iranian farmers and their supporters gathered in the central city of Isfahan on Friday, state TV reported, in a major protest over water shortages in the drought-stricken region.
“Let Isfahan breathe again, revive Zayandeh Rud,” chanted some of the demonstrators in a video posted on social media as crowds gathered in the dry bed of the river where protesting farmers have set up a tent city. “Our children want water to provide food for your children,” read a sign carried by a woman.

Iran’s energy minister apologized for the water shortages. “I apologize to all of our dear farmers, and I feel ashamed for not being able to provide the water needed for their crops. With God’s help, I hope we can overcome these shortcomings in the next few months,” Ali Akbar Mehrabian told state TV.

The farmers in Isfahan province have for years protested against the diversion of water from the Zayandeh Rud river to supply other areas, leaving their farms dry and threatening their livelihoods. A pipeline carrying water to Yazd province has been repeatedly damaged, according to Iranian media.

While news reports have focused on the economics of the protests in Isfahan, Iranian experts note that the mass demonstration is a message that Iranians reject the legitimacy of the Islamic Republic.

Kaveh Shahrooz, a Canadian-Iranian expert on Iran, tweeted: “The latest Iran protests will be presented to the West as a simple grievance or over water. Don’t believe it when it happens. The people are chanting (roughly translated): ‘by cannon, by tank, the clerics must go.’ What they’re calling for is people-led regime change.”

In July, street protests broke out over water shortages in the oil-producing southwestern province of Khuzestan, with the United Nations’ human rights chief criticizing the fatal shooting of protesters. Iran rejected the criticism.

Source » jpost