Deadly Protests Continue In Iran

In this photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, university students attend a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by anti-riot Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. A wave of spontaneous protests over Iran's weak economy swept into Tehran on Saturday, with college students and others chanting against the government just hours after hard-liners held their own rally in support of the Islamic Republic's clerical establishment. (AP Photo)
In this photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, university students attend a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by anti-riot Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. A wave of spontaneous protests over Iran's weak economy swept into Tehran on Saturday, with college students and others chanting against the government just hours after hard-liners held their own rally in support of the Islamic Republic's clerical establishment. (AP Photo)
In this photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, university students attend a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by anti-riot Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. A wave of spontaneous protests over Iran's weak economy swept into Tehran on Saturday, with college students and others chanting against the government just hours after hard-liners held their own rally in support of the Islamic Republic's clerical establishment. (AP Photo)
In this photo taken by an individual not employed by the Associated Press and obtained by the AP outside Iran, university students attend a protest inside Tehran University while a smoke grenade is thrown by anti-riot Iranian police, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. A wave of spontaneous protests over Iran's weak economy swept into Tehran on Saturday, with college students and others chanting against the government just hours after hard-liners held their own rally in support of the Islamic Republic's clerical establishment. (AP Photo)

Deadly Protests Continue In Iran

In the past three days, Iranian police have arrested close to 500 protesters in Tehran. At least 21 people have died from the encounters, according to an NPR report

Protesters also attacked police stations across the country. 

Considered by Iran’s regime as the worst possible insult, protesters have resorted to defacing images of the Islamic Republic’s founder, the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. 

Iran's current Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, accused outsiders for the unrest. He posted on his official website, “...enemies of Iran used different tools including cash, weapons, politics and intelligence apparatus to create troubles for the Islamic Republic." 

President Donald Trump also chimed in on Twitter. He tweeted, “The people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime...All of the money that President Obama so foolishly gave them went into terrorism and into their 'pockets.' The people have little food, big inflation and no human rights. The U.S. is watching!" 

We analyze the causes of the protests with Mateo Farzaneh, associate professor of history and inaugural principal of The Mossadegh Initiative at Northeastern Illinois University-Chicago. His most recent book is The Iranian Constitutional Revolution and the Clerical Leadership of Khurasani.