Regime Moves To Suppress Protests Sparked By Sharp Rise In Food Costs

(New York, N.Y.) — Protests across Iran that began in response to a surge in the cost of basic food items are targeting the Iranian regime’s corrupt economic mismanagement. Protestors’ slogans and grievances have targeted regime leaders, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Ebrahim Raisi, the latter of whom cut food subsidies and increased prices of basic staples. Rising inflation and high unemployment have also raised protesters’ ire.

Predictably, rather than addressing the core issues of joblessness, poverty, and corruption, the regime has stymied the dissension through the arrests of several prominent activists and the disruption of internet service to civilians. At least four people have been killed by Iranian security forces. 

Workers’ and middle-class rights have long been under siege in Iran. In 2019, protests broke out due to significant increases in fuel costs. In response, the regime killed hundreds of demonstrators and arrested thousands across the country. 

Due to regime mismanagement, Iranians continue to sink deeper into financial crisis. As the World Bank notes, “All major components of GDP (expenditure side) are contracting, pointing to a broad-based recession.” The combination of unemployment, negative economic growth, inflation, regime mismanagement, corruption, the pandemic, and lack of political and economic liberties will continue to squeeze families across Iran, portending continued domestic unrest and regime repression.  

To read UANI’s resource Iran’s War on Workers and the Middle Class, please click here.