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The Iranian regime – tottering on the edge of the precipice

Written By | Feb 21, 2020
Anti-Americanism, Nuclear, Iran, Terrorism, Global Terrorism, Iran national flag, Iranian Regime, Votes, Democracy, Elections

Flag of Iran. (Image via Wikipedia entry on Iran, CC 2.0.)

FRANCE: The Iranian regime officers have repeatedly summoned people to participate in the upcoming elections. The international observers’ judgment and attitudes depend on this stuff”, has affirmed Ali Khamenei, supreme leader of Iran. He also believes that a strong parliament with high participation of voters is necessary to cope with the international isolation that has put the regime into a crisis. (Elections are the solution to many of our international problems.)

The regime has always used elections to determine its legitimacy to the international community. However, the mid-November 2019 uprising and the brutal killing of at least 1,500 young people by the Revolutionary Guards have created a legitimacy crisis.

Iran’s opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi, a sworn enemy of the Mullahs, has called people to boycott the election.

This appeal has been circulating on social media among the Iranians. Regarding the elections, Rajavi said: “The boycott of this election is a national duty and it represents a covenant with our martyrs, especially those killed at the November uprising”. Also, she added, it is in line with the demands of the students that participated at the demonstration after the intentional downfall of the Ukrainian plane, where they claimed for the resignation of the commander in chief.

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Meanwhile, the opposition leader is not alone in the mission to boycott the elections. Many other influential groups from Iran are also calling to support this initiative. Some of the most famous female political prisoners in Evin prison have written a statement boycotting the election.

“The fingerprint of anyone who goes to the polls to vote will be engraved on the trigger that shot at our revolutionary youth. This will be a sign of support to the ruling regime and its crimes. The Iranian people have already announced their true votes in the 2018 and last November uprisings”.

Also, Narges Mohammadi, vice-president of the Center for Human Rights Defenders and Political Prisoner Imprisoned in Zanjan Prison, has published a letter calling for the boycott of the 11th parliamentary elections.

“We will not be present at the ballot box in honor of the blood of the oppressed”.

Even some factions within the Iranian Regime have rejected the election. For instance, Mohammad Atrianfar, a journalist and politician within the regime, said about this election:  “The person or groups who talk about boycotting the election have chosen passivity or overthrowing.”

All this movement is just one more crisis that the regime is facing, together with the economic crisis. About two-thirds of the population is below the poverty line and they are just protesting against the deprivation and unemployment. (Iran parliamentary election set today with hardliners expected to win)

Read Also: Iran’s Religious Regime: Forty years of international struggle

According to AFP, people who reside in Tehran want to boycott the elections because of the poor economic conditions. Government spokesman Ali Rabiee has stated:

“There is no doubt that today’s situation has more sensitivity and urgency than ever before in the history of the Islamic Republic.
International and domestic isolation, as well as the appalling fear of a subsequent uprising, have put the regime under unprecedented pressure. The Iranian regime is well aware that it is walking on the edge of the precipice”.

Khamenei is aware of the hatred of the Iranian people after the 2019 November’s massacre and their refusal to vote, as he affirmed:

“One may not like me, however, anyone who wants to solve the country’s problems must vote and participate in the election”.

In such a critical situation, the Iranian regime is holding the elections. On the one hand, it needs to show its union and consolidate forces to stand against the uprisings held by young people, and to face all the crises. On the other hand, by eliminating and disqualifying other factions’ candidates, it is entering a dangerous phase that may spark another uprising at a time.

Hamid Enayat

Hamid Enayat is an independent Iranian political analyst and writer based in Europe.