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Iranian Protests

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Zach Moroney

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Coup in Zimbabwe
December 13, 2017

December 28, 2017, began a series of protests throughout Iran. The protests started in one of the second largest cities in Iran–Mashhad. The economic policies of the country and the government’s current leadership, including Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei, the country’s second supreme leader. Khamenei came to power in 1989. Prior to becoming supreme leader, Khamenei served the Iranian people as president from 1981 to 1989. The unrest is due to general opposition to the country’s regime and its supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, and the failure of President Hassan Rouhani to keep faith with a promise of political change that addresses the economy, unemployment, and shifts in cultural and some religious traditions. Unemployment among Iranian young people is especially high.

The protests have escalated becoming violent as well. In early January, 21 protesters and two security force members were killed and over 1000 demonstrators were detained. Water cannons have been deployed to push back crowds. The civil unrest has spread to more than 80 cities. Politicians say the frustrations of the people can no longer be ignored. Citizens have sidestepped government social media restrictions by using freeware downloaded from the Internet so that news of the protests could be shared across the world. Circumvented social media has also provided necessary communication among the various factions of the protestors.

As of this posting, the people of Iran are continuing to protest. It is unclear what the outcome will be. With social media, the theme of Xavier’s Summit this year, watching how it is used in this volatile situation will be informative.

By TOI Staff & AFP

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“2017–18 Iranian Protests.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 23 Jan. 2018, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017%E2%80%9318_Iranian_protests.
Erdbrink, Thomas, and David. “How Corruption and Cronyism in Banking Fueled Iran’s Protests.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 20 Jan. 2018, www.nytimes.com/2018/01/20/world/middleeast/iran-protests-corruption-banks.html.

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