THIS PAGE WILL BE UPDATED WITH THE LATEST NEWS
UPDATE: 9:00 PM CET
Iran Uprising at a Glance – Day 189
Based partially on reporting by PMOI (MEK) Network in Iran
Thursday, March 23, 2023 – 8 PM GMT + 1
- Days: 189
- Protests: 282 cities
- Fatalities: 750+ estimated deaths, 672 identified by MEK
- Detentions: 30,000
Iran’s nationwide uprising marked its 189th day of anti-regime protests by people from all walks of life, including even retirees and pensioners who seek to make ends meet and the mullahs’ dictatorship is depriving them of their basic necessities. Iran’s economy is in ruins as the national currency has nosedived due to the regime’s destructive and corrupt economic policies. An increasing number of regime officials are voicing concerns about these economic woes erupting into more protests and a new surge in the country’s uprising.
Locals in the Shahrak-e Bagheri district of Tehran began chanting anti-regime slogans last night till early hours of today , including:
“Death to Khamenei! Damned be Khomeini!”
“This is the year Seyed Ali (Khamenei) is overthrown!”
Reports also indicate that IRGC units in the city of Baneh, western Iran, shot and killed a 19-year-old local. People from different parts of this city began protesting and reportedly attacked at least three security checkpoints in response. Footage of the young man killed was being circulated on social media and tension is escalating in Baneh, according to local activists.
Today In Naqadeh, northwest Iran, fearing the explosive social discontent, regime authorities in a desperate move deployed a large number of security units to this city, including special anti-riot forces.
In Ardabil, northwest Iran, defiant youth attacked a building of the regime’s so-called “Foundation of Martyrs” for taking advantage of and harassing the families of victims and those left disabled from the 1980s Iran-Iraq war.
In Yazdanshahr located in Kerman province south-central Iran, courageous youth targeted the signage of a square named after the criminal commander of the terrorist Quds force, Qassem Soleimani.
The Growing Danger of the Iranian Cyber Threat
America’s slow retreat from the Middle East has created an unstable geopolitical vacuum met by increasingly dangerous Iranian cyber capabilities. While Israel and several Arab nations are banding together against this digital onslaught, the Biden administration appears unwilling to take up the mantle of cyber leadership. Its reluctance to act is a missed opportunity on multiple fronts: The U.S. can also better protect its own networks with intelligence gained from partners on the front lines, and American strategic orchestration begets a more coherent and effective multilateral response to Tehran. Meanwhile, the administration is quickly losing its ability to maintain friendly oil markets and contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
Congress Presses Europe To Designate Iran’s Military as a Terror Group
A coalition of Republican senators is pressuring the European Union to designate Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization, warning that Tehran’s paramilitary fighting force is “sowing terror in the West.”
“The IRGC clearly presents a threat to the EU and our collective security,” 12 Republican senators led by Sen. James Risch (R., Idaho), ranking member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, wrote on Wednesday to Josep Borrell, the EU’s high representative for foreign affairs and security policy. “It is long past time to cut off its resources before the next tragedy strikes.”
The EU has stalled for months on a recommendation by the European Parliament that it designate the IRGC as a terrorist organization and put in place a strict sanctions regime. European countries have been hesitant to move forward with such a designation due to trade relations, but pressure has mounted in the months since Iran began supplying lethal drone technology to Russia for its war in Ukraine. Iran has issued threats of “unwanted legal and political consequences” for Europe if it designates the IRGC as a terrorist group.
UPDATE: 3:30 PM CET
Outrage Over Killing of 19 Years Young Man in Kurdistan Province
According to local sources, Behzad Azizi, a 19-year-old young man was killed by security forces at the “Karim Abad” checkpoint, located three kilometers from the city of Baneh, Kurdistan province on Wednesday, March 22.
According to the source, several bullets were fired by IRGC guards at the head and body of this young man, without prior warning. The body of Behzad Azizi was transferred to Salahuddin Ayubi Baneh Hospital and has not been handed over to his family yet.
When news broke out, locals attacked the Karim Abad police station and set it on fire. Terrified of the public outrage, IRGC personnel reportedly fled and abandoned the station. Furious locals and family members also held a protest rally in front of the hospital on Wednesday.
UPDATE: 10:30 AM CET
U.S. Judge Orders $1.68 Bln Payout to Families Over 1983 Beirut Bombing
March 22 (Reuters) – A federal judge in New York ordered Iran’s central bank and a European intermediary on Wednesday to pay out $1.68 billion to family members of troops killed in the 1983 car bombing of the U.S. Marine Corps barracks in Lebanon.
U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska said a 2019 federal law stripped Bank Markazi, the Iran central bank, of sovereign immunity from the lawsuit, which sought to enforce a judgment against Iran for providing material support to the attackers.
Justice Department Announces Charges and Sentence in Connection with Iranian Procurement Network’s Attempts to Acquire Sophisticated Military Technology
A federal court in the District of Columbia unsealed two indictments yesterday charging multiple defendants with violations of the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) and the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) for their roles in separate schemes to procure and export U.S. technology to Iran between 2005 and 2013. In connection with this announcement, the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control designated three of the defendants and four entities for their involvement in the procurement of equipment that supports Iran’s ballistic missile and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and weapons programs.
Iran’s Future, Democracy, and Representative Government
To borrow from President Ronald Reagan, Reza Pahlavi’s monarchist voyage has been “like a baby’s alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other.” Everywhere he goes, the son of a hated former monarch of Iran seems to gargle political moonshine and then curtsies away. And, he has never shed the title of “royal highness” or “heir to the throne.”
His so-called “European tour,” proved to be a complete fiasco in France and the UK as many members of parliament declined to meet with him.
UPDATE: 8:00 AM CET
Nowruz Celebration in Ashraf 3, Albania
Members of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) celebrated Nowruz in Ashraf 3, Albania, in the presence of Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI). In this ceremony, the MEK members paid homage to the martyrs of Iran’s nationwide protests as well as the tens of thousands who have laid down their lives in four decades of resistance against the tyranny of the mullahs’ regime ruling Iran.
In her speech at the ceremony, Mrs. Rajavi said, “Although our cities, from Zahedan and Kurdish cities to Tehran, are drenched with the blood of 750 Iranian young men and women, like all the festivities our Resistance celebrates, we are determined to celebrate it with a bleeding heart and a smiling face. These flames ignited by the crimson blood in the night of the homeland are the spring of Iran.”
Iranians Pay Respect to Fallen Heroes, Vow More Anti-regime Protests
People in cities checkered across Iran are welcoming Nowruz and paying their respects to the country’s heroes and heroines, especially those who were killed by the mullahs’ regime in the protests of the ongoing Iranian revolution that began in September 2022. As part of their tradition, the Iranian people visit the resting places of their loved ones as the new year begins, and this year it has become a strong method of voicing their hatred of the mullahs’ dictatorship and pledging to continue the revolution to establish about freedom and democracy in Iran.
Iranian Workers Struggle With Basic Needs As Dispute Over Minimum Wage Continues
Following the founding of the mullahs’ regime in Iran and its interference in the internal affairs of neighboring countries, particularly in Muslim nations, the Iranian Resistance chose to reveal these malicious intentions despite facing various forms of slander. Since then, the regime’s media has been forced to acknowledge that their promotion of global terrorism and the so-called “export of revolution” has placed a significant economic burden on the people, particularly during popular uprisings. On January 19, the Kayhan daily, which serves as the mouthpiece of regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei, sought to justify the regime’s actions in the Middle East while downplaying the adverse economic effects of this strategy.
An Unhappy New Year
Nowruz, the Persian New Year, literally means “New Day”. The arrival of spring and the reawakening of nature is a time of inspiration for all Iranians. Sadly, for 85 million Iranians, such a society does not exist. The mullahs’ theocratic-fascist regime offers only repression, cruelty, injustice, torture, corruption, and the export of terror. That they do so in the name of Islam is an outrage and disgrace. This year Iranians will be praying that Nowruz will bring the blossoming of a new and better future for Iran and an end to decades of suffering under the tyrannical dictatorship of the mullahs and before that, the savage despotism of the Shah.
US State Department 2022 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Iran
Iran experienced widespread unrest during the year. Multiple nationwide protests began after the September 16 death of Mahsa (Jina) Amini in the custody of morality police after she allegedly violated mandatory veiling laws, and security forces used lethal force against protesters. Women and youth led the protests, chanting “Women, Life, Freedom” and “Death to the Dictator.” By the end of the year, security forces killed more than 500 persons, including at least 69 children, and arrested more than 19,000 protesters, including children, according to the nongovernmental organization Human Rights Activists News Agency. Some of those arrested faced the death penalty, including children. The government also routinely disrupted access to the internet and communications applications to prevent the free flow of information and to attempt to interrupt or diminish participation in protests.
Unidentified Drone | Explosions Heard in Iranian Militias in Al-bo Kamal Desert
Deir Ezzor province: Explosions were heard in Al-Bo Kamal desert in Deir Ezzor countryside near the borders with Iraq, originating from “Al-Imam Ali” base that is used by Iranian militias as their position, coinciding with the flight of an unidentified drone over the region. However, no casualties have been reported yet. It is worth noting that the Iranian militias conducted military exercises this morning in the targeted position.
Also, read Iran News in Brief – March 22, 2023