Author Archives: Laila Jazayeri

The Independent View: The enduring Iranian uprising – one year on

From September 16, 2022, Iran changed forever! On that day, in response to the killing of Mahsa Amini, an anti-government protest began that quickly spread throughout the country. What started as a demonstration against the compulsory Hijab soon became a political outcry targeting the entire regime. Chants of “Death to the dictator,” “Death to Khamenei,” and “Death to the oppressor, be it the Shah or the Leader (Khamenei)” echoed from nearly 300 cities across all 31 provinces of Iran. Women played the leading role throughout the uprising.

The regime wasted no time in mobilising its forces to control the situation. Despite the brutal crackdown, which resulted in the deaths of at least 750 protesters, including women and children, and the arrest of over 30,000 individuals, the uprising persisted for several months. It was the regime’s biggest challenge, pushing it to the brink of collapse.

A year later, with widespread discontent among the Iranian people, returning to the pre-September 2022 era is virtually impossible for the regime. The regime’s only way to hold on to power is through more executions, imprisonments, and torture. The failure of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s strategy to quell the uprising has revealed internal feuding within the regime. With chants of “Death to Khamenei” becoming a common refrain from the Iranian people, the authority and legitimacy of Khamenei have significantly eroded. Lower-ranking regime members have also abandoned their positions, contributing to the regime’s decline and instability.

Organised resistance has played a significant role in the uprising, mainly through the Resistance Units affiliated with the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK/PMOI). The activities of the MEK’s Resistance Units have been closely monitored by the regime’s intelligence agencies, signalling their effectiveness and impact. The MEK/PMOI and its President-elect, Maryam Rajavi, have gained support and recognition at the global level. Over 3,600 parliamentarians worldwide and 124 former world leaders have endorsed Rajavi’s 10-point plan, which outlines a vision for a democratic Iran with gender equality at its core

On September 12, more than 1,000 women dignitaries rallied behind Rajavi, urging the international community to stand by the Iranian people, particularly women, in their quest for freedom. They called for blacklisting the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). The wide-scale support for the MEK/PMOI and Maryam Rajavi’s Ten-Point Plan demonstrates the growing international recognition of a viable and democratic alternative for Iran.

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