Food protests in Iran triggered last week by a sudden hike in prices of essential goods were violently repressed with security forces using lethal force
A new wave of nationwide protests was triggered last week by a cut in state subsidies for imported wheat that caused price hikes of as much as 300% for a variety of flour-based staples.
The prices of essential goods including bread, milk, dairy products, eggs, poultry, and cooking oil have also risen sharply amid Iran’s 40-percent inflation rate.
The cities of Andimeshk, Dezful, Izeh, Droud, Shahrekord, Junqan, Yasuj, and Neishabour were among areas hit by protests over skyrocketing prices of food staples.
All sectors of Iranian society are being crushed under soaring inflation, rampant unemployment, meager wages, and widespread water shortages, as well as the Iranian regime’s repressive policies.
Speaking on May 9 on state television, Raisi pledged that the price of traditional bread, gasoline, and medicine would remain unchanged.
In order to compensate for the rise in prices, Raisi said direct payments equivalent to approximately $10 or $13 would be disbursed for two months for each family member of low-income households. Later, he said Iranians will be offered electronic coupons that would allow them to access a limited amount of subsidized bread.
Reports suggested that the price of cooking oil had almost quadrupled since Raisi’s announcement, while the price of eggs and chicken nearly doubled.
Lethal state violence against peaceful protests
Following the recent protests in Iran, the state security forces, and riot police were dispatched to restive cities to confront the protests.
Though the exact number of people detained during the food protests in Iran is not known, reports indicate that hundreds of protesters, including children, have been arrested. The detainees are in danger of maltreatment and torture
According to the state-run IRNA news agency, at least 50 people have been arrested in the protests in Dorud, Lorestan, 15 in Dezful, Khuzestan, and seven in Yasuj, Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad.
Social media reports, eyewitness accounts, and videos from the protests indicate that the state security forces resorted to unlawful use of force, including birdshot, gunfire, and mass arrests, in their ongoing crackdown on peaceful protests in several cities, leaving dozens of people injured.
An Iranian official admitted the killing of a protester in the southwest.
Ahmad Avai told the state-run ILNA news agency one person had been killed during rallies in Dezful, a city in Khuzestan Province.
This is while at least five protesters have been identified as killed by security forces in recent food protests in Iran.
The slain protesters are:
Behrouz Eslami, the father to two little boys, was shot dead by security forces on May 14 during protests in the city of Babaheidar, in Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province, southwest Iran.