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Iran Regime’s Parliamentary by-Election: Another Sign of Public Defiance and Mullahs’ Deadlock

Last week, the Iranian regime held its sham parliamentary by-election. Like the original one in February, the by-election, with an unprecedented public boycott, showed the mullahs’ deadlock and desperation.  

In this regard, the state-run Mardom Salari daily on Wednesday wrote: “We must be realistic to prevent social disintegration. The turnout in the by-election shows that there are fixed procedures beyond the executive and the legislative power, and that parliament does not and will not have the ability to change the situation. The result of the spread of this belief among the people was the meager turnout in last Friday’s by-election. 

The state-run Arman daily wrote on Wednesday: “Only two percent of the eligible voter in Karaj [near Tehran] participated in the by-election.”  

Referring to the regime’s failed sham parliamentary elections in February and people’s boycott Arman added: This rate of declining participation [at the regime’s sham parliamentary elections in February] and the subsequent increasing rift between the nation and the officials is unprecedented during the last 40 years. Society’s tolerance is about to end due to many livelihood problems and a lack of civil and social freedoms, and other challenges. 

During both nationwide Iran protests in 2018 and 2019, the Iranian people rejected the regime’s longtime deception of “reformism” by chanting “reformist, hardliner, the game is over.” These so-called reformists, led by the regime’s president Hassan Rouhani, have held top security posts within the regime. Rouhani’s record of executing over 4,000 people during his tenure, killing 1500 protesters during the November 2019 uprising, and using his terrorist diplomat, Asadollah Assadi, to use his diplomatic cover for bombing the opposition’s rally in 2018 describes the mullahs’ “moderation” and “reformism.”  

In this regard, in an interview with the state-run Mostaghel daily, Mullah Hadi Ghafari, one of the regime’s former judiciary officials, referring to the failed game of “reformism,” said: “If the status quo continues, the [presidential election] turnout will be low. For example, I obtained information that only one percent of eligible voters went to the polls in the second round of the parliamentary elections in some cities.” 

While debunking the regime’s claims and effort to blame international sanctions for Iran’s economic hardships and the regime’s international isolation, Ghafari added: “The reason for the country’s current situation in terms of livelihood is the existence of structural problems in the constitution. Unfortunately, the country’s economic relations with the world have reached a dead end because there has been a kind of immorality in the country’s foreign policy. Unfortunately, there is a view that the entire world is bad, and only we [the regime] are good. We have to admit that today’s world no longer likes bad luck. 

Saeed Hajarian, one of the regime’s former top security officials, expressed his utter fear of another uprising on the scale of the major Iran protests of November, which rattled the regime’s foundations. His remarks were carried by the state-run Khabar-e Fori (breaking news) website.   

“Right at the [regime’s sham presidential] elections, there will be some domestic and regional crises. These crises could be the people’s piled demands, which they expressed in January 2018 and November 2019. Therefore, deprived, frustrated, poor, and dissenting people will clash with the supporters of the system.”  

The Iranian regime is currently facing a restive society. Forty years of oppression and wrong economic policies by the mullahs’ regime have turned the Iranian society into a powder keg. The nationwide uprisings in 2018 and 2019, and people’s general boycott of the regime’s sham parliamentary elections and by-election, show people’s conflict with this regime has reached an irreversible point. The Iranian people have demonstrated their desire for regime change by chanting: “Death to the dictator. They rejected the regime’s warmongering policies by chanting: “Neither Gaza nor Lebanon, my life only for Iran.  

In return, to control this society, the mullahs have resorted to more suppression. The recent execution of Navid Afkari, arrested during the 2018 uprising, and ongoing human rights violations in Iran, are testaments to the fact that the mullahs will continue oppressing people until their very last day. But this will not stop the people of Iran from demanding regime change. Continuous daily protests across Iran confirm thfact that Iranian society is yearning for change.  

It is time for the international community to stand on the right side of history by recognizing Iranian people’s right to resistance and overthrowing this regime.