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Iran: One nation, one flag

Tehran Times – Recent protests and the ensuing riots in Iran have drawn global attention and meddling which led to Iranians of all hues rallying around the flag in what appeared to be a moment of national pondering.

Just like any other country in the world, Iran has its own shortcomings and problems. And protests over these woes are nothing new. Over the last few years, Iranians from all walks of life have sought to get their grievances addressed by their officials. At every turn, they were keen to maintain peace and stability while ensuring that socioeconomic malaise is addressed without any foreign meddling. 

This was the case with the protests that erupted in the wake of the tragic death of Mahsa Amini, which caused huge anger and sorrow across Iran. In the beginning, everything seemed to be moving on the right track with ordinary Iranians staging peaceful protests and Iranian officialdom heeding calls for accountability.   

Iranian President Ayatollah Ebrahim Raisi was keen to personally follow the matter. He spoke with the family of Mahsa Amini immediately after he learned of her death to offer condolences and a promise of justice.

“Your daughter is like my own daughter, and I feel that this incident happened to one of my loved ones. Please accept my condolences,” President Raisi told the Amini family. “I learned about this incident during my trip to Uzbekistan, and I immediately ordered my colleagues to investigate the matter specially. I assure you that I will demand this issue from the responsible institutions so that its dimensions are clarified and no rights are violated.”

Just as Iranian officials were following the case, foreign ill-wishers were not sitting idly by. Western media outlets started fanning the flames of protests and soon turned them into riots through obvious incitement and provocation. 

“Protests will only succeed in toppling the Iranian regime if they explode rapidly and shake the regime to its foundations before it has time to catch its breath,” wrote the Jerusalem Post. 

As rioters set fire to dumpsters, banks, cars, and – literally – police officers, peaceful protestors had no other option but to go back homes. Thus how protests deviated from their peaceful path.

Over the last few weeks, many Iranians pondered over the situation in their country. They have noted in various modalities their conviction that foreign meddling is detrimental to their quest for accountability and will only make things worse. They have seen how those who pretend to support them imposed the strongest sanctions in history against Iran.
Today, many Iranians believe that the only way to address shortcomings is through unity. At the end of the day, every foreign power pursues only its own interests, not those of the Iranian people. Iran is one of the most diverse countries in the West Asia region. So it’s natural for it to have differences of opinion. But Iranians know full well that these differences should by no means be exploited by foreign powers. Unity is the panacea for all problems.  

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