BEHIND THE IRAN HEADLINES Series, FEBRUARY 25, 2022
Alireza Jafarzadeh, NCRI-US Deputy Director: The fact of the matter is that the desperate party and the weaker party in the Vienna talks is the Iranian regime. Why? Because they have lost the trust of their own people, the majority of the Iranian people rejected this regime during the most recent presidential elections; A mass murderer, Ebrahim Raisi was handpicked by the Supreme Leader to prevent the restart of massive nationwide protests that have engulfed Iran since 2018. There have been 8 major uprisings in Iran over the past 4 years. Yet, 7 months after Raisi presidency, the regime has failed to stop the protests and as we speak, teachers in over 100 cities are protesting. State-run corruption is all over leading to a vast majority of the Iranian people living below the poverty line.
This regime is weak and vulnerable and facing multiple crises, none of which would be resolved by a nuclear agreement. It needs to project power by hostage-taking, terrorism, and more uranium enrichments. The West and the countries of the region must not fall into this trap. Now is the time to ratchet up pressure on the regime and force it to back down from its threats. Instead of rewarding the regime for its terrorism, hostage-taking, and nuclear threats, it should be penalized and held accountable.
Raisi should be spending time now before international tribunals for crimes against humanity instead of making trips and seeking concessions.