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Iran at United Nations accuses USA of 'grotesque' meddling

Iran at United Nations accuses USA of 'grotesque' meddling

"You will see great support from the United States at the appropriate time!"

Iran has accused Washington of stirring up the protests. But U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says more sanctions "targeting human rights abuses are coming".

United Nations rights chief Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein separately urged Iranian authorities "to handle the wave of protests that have taken place around the country with great care so as not to further inflame violence and unrest".

On Dec 30, regime supporters rally around the country for officially sanctioned demonstrations to commemorate the defeat of the 2009 protest movement.

In Iran, too, a different kind of hubris is sure to force the hands of all factions caught in a risky situation.

Last month U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley showed reporters missile parts with logos suggesting they were manufactured by Shahid. Americans on both sides of the political aisle can not stay silent as we watch the Iranian regime use violence on those seeking to hold their government accountable.

Tehran's Friday prayer leader called on authorities to deal "firmly" with those responsible for igniting over a week of demonstrations, in which 22 people have died and more than 1,000 have been arrested, according to Iranian officials.

Iranian state television has repeatedly broadcasted nationalistic songs and given the pro-government rallies significant media coverage. "It is limiting the flow of information into Iran, restricting free speech, and attempting to prevent the outside world from observing its own repression", her statement said.

Nauert says the US supports Iranians' "legitimate aspirations" and calls on Iran's government to ease controls on information and allow peaceful demonstration.

The suppression by Iranian authorities has made it hard for outside sources to analyze the situation, resulting in the US government looking into its options at helping to open up the internet in Iran.

She says the US message to the government's victims is that "you will not be forgotten".

The US says Europeans were pushing Italian politician Federica Mogherini - the high representative for foreign affairs and security policy at the EU - for days to make a statement - and in the end tried to leverage US efforts to force her hand into finally issuing the statement.

The region near the borders with Iraq and Turkey has been the scene of occasional clashes with Kurdish separatist groups as well as extremist Islamic militants.

Iran on Thursday directly blamed a Central Intelligence Agency official for a week of protests calling for the overthrow of the Islamic Republic, as the strength of the demonstrations was uncertain with fewer reports of rallies.

More news: EPS for Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL) Expected At $0.97

After seven days of rioting involving hundreds of thousands of protesters, the terrified clerical regime has instructed Gen. Ali Jafari, the head of its criminal Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, recently listed as an worldwide terrorist organization by the U.S. Treasury Department, to claim that "the sedition" has been put down and that only 15,000 "troublemakers" in total had taken to the streets over the past week of riots.

Iranian and USA officials have traded barbs for the past week, and Tehran maintains that the United States and its allies orchestrated the unrest.

While there appeared to be extensive communication through social media, the protests had no clear leader nor any clear set of grievances, Banai said.

Associated Press writers Josh Lederman and Bradley Klapper in Washington contributed.

Some 42,000 people took part in the unrest across the country, Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli was quoted as saying by state TV.

In a statement, the Toronto-based Iranian Canadian Congress said it was saddened by the loss of life in Iran and supported the right of Iranians to freedom of expression and assembly and to demonstrate peacefully.

While vague, Fazli's comments marked the first government estimate of participation in the protests and appeared timed so authorities could contrast it against the mass crowds brought together for the pro-government demonstrations. He did not elaborate.

Thousands rallied on Thursday in support of the government in various towns and cities, including in the northeastern city of Mashhad, where the anti-government protests began last week and extended to other cities. Unrest surrounding them has killed at least 21 people.

At least 21 people have been killed in the unrest surrounding the protests, which began last week over rising food prices and soaring unemployment before spreading to cities across almost all of Iran's provinces.

State Department threatened Thursday to take punitive action against Iranian officials who've killed anti-government protesters or engaged in violence and other aggressive tactics to crush demonstrations that swept the Mideast nation over the past week.

Iranians have a history of public civil dissent with pictures of revolutionary figures on their streets and their mantles.

People like me who openly support the courageous protesters who risk their lives on the streets of that nation's villages, towns and cities are not the enemies of Iran.

The protests began on December 28, sparked by Iran's flagging economy and a rise in food prices, before morphing over the following days into calls for the downfall of Iran's theocratic government.

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