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30 December 2017, 01:08 | Colleen Roy
Iranians come together to protest against the rise of living costs unemployment and poverty on 28 December 2017
Police confronted the "illegal" protest "with tolerance", Norouzian said, adding that the authorities arrested a number of people who meant to destroy public property, without providing details. She said, "The courageous protests erupting in vast parts of Iran today, once again demonstrate that the overthrow of the clerical regime and replacing it with democracy and popular sovereignty is a nationalist and nationwide demand".
The semi-official ILNA news agency and social media reported demonstrations in other cities in Razavi Khorasan Province, including Neyshabour and Kashmar.
On Thursday, hundreds took to the streets of Iran's second-largest city Mashhad and other towns to protest high prices and unemployment. Many Iranians now say they agree with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's repeated warnings the US can't be trusted.
Purely political protests are rare in Iran, where security services are omnipresent.
Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, hailed Iranian protesters and admired women's courageous role in this major uprising.
However, the anger at the inability of the government of President Hassan Rouhani to control prices developed into broader anti-government protests, calling for the release of political prisoners and an end to police beatings.
In Mashhad, Ayatollah Ahmad Alamolhoda, the leader of Friday prayers who is seen as a close ally of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned that protesters shouldn't allow their concerns "to become fodder for the foreign media, which wants to sow sedition".
The report quoted the security deputy of Tehran's governor, Mohsen Hamedani, as saying that fewer than 50 people gathered at a public square in Tehran, and that a lot of them left after a police warning but a few made a decision to stay on.
IRNA pointed out that other protests also took place in the cities of Neyshabur, Shahroud and Yazd.
Tehran backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in his country's civil war, Shi'ite militias in Iraq, Houthi rebels in Yemen and Lebanon's powerful Hezbollah group.
The protests in Mashhad, which were attended by hundreds according to footage posted on social media and sent to CHRI, ended after about two hours after police intervened and arrested several participants.
So has inflation, which Iran's Central Bank says has returned to 10 percent. Protesters also waved banners denouncing Iran's interference in the Arab region, chanting "forget about Syria, think about us".
Mashhad was among the areas hardest hit by the closure of Mizan, which had around one million accounts, according to the official IRNA news agency.
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