Pro-government rallies held in Iran

Haley Iranians are crying out for freedom

Pro-government rallies held in Iran

Donald Trump kicked off his Tuesday-morning Tweet storm by accusing Barack Obama of funding terrorism. The Iranian people are fed up with the corruption and human rights violations.

Showing the Iranian government that the world is watching could make leaders think twice about cracking down on dissent, said Yadi Mahmodi, who was organizing a solidarity protest in north Toronto, scheduled for Tuesday evening.

The demonstrations come after the country's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei put the wave of unrest down to meddling by "enemies of Iran".

Pro- and anti-government demonstrators took to the streets starting December 28, 2017, and gradually moved from the outer cities into the capital, Tehran, and Iran's second-largest city, Mashhad.

While the Iranian regime has invested billions on advanced new weaponry and engaged in what Iranian leaders have described as a massive military buildup, the economic revival promised by the Obama administration and Iranian leaders who negotiated the nuclear deal has failed to materialize.

Trump tweeted: 'The people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime.

The latest unrest, which is on a smaller scale than that of 2009, say analysts, is being dealt with more cautiously, with authorities instead containing protests locally as they occur, without the mass deployment of Revolutionary Guards units.

Ms Haley told a press conference that the protests were "completely spontaneous" and showed a "long-oppressed people rising up against their dictators".

Hamid Yazdan Panah

This outcry is the most serious challenge to Tehran's authority since the so-called Green Movement of 2009 when millions marched in Tehran to express their dissatisfaction with the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad following allegations of the rigged vote.

In his letter, Iranian UN envoy Gholamali Khoshroo said the United States had a track record of intervening in Iranian affairs.

Nationwide anti-government protests have left about 50 people dead in Iran, even as a staggering 4,000 protestors have been arrested across Tehran and various cities.

Organisers appear to have used social media to call for more protests in dozens of towns and cities across the country tonight from 5pm local time. "All those who are at odds with the Islamic Republic have utilised various means, including money, weapons, politics and intelligence apparatus, to create problems for the Islamic system, the Islamic Republic and the Islamic revolution".

The European Union said it was monitoring the situation and that it expected Iranians' rights to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression to be guaranteed.

Demonstrations started in Iran's second city of Mashhad on Thursday, when hundreds of people protested against high prices of basic goods.

Rouhani pushed back on Trump's remarks, saying the USA president had no right to sympathize with protesters because he "called the Iranian nation terrorists a few months ago".

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