“We wish you made it clear for the world, because we are confused to whether believe your democratic poses or the tied hands of the French students,” read the letter of a group of students from the Iranian capital city of Tehran to French President Emmanuel Macron.
In their letter, released on Monday and to be cabled in French on Tuesday, the Iranian students protested against the humiliating treatment of the French students by the police forces of the country.
The letter said that the recent case of French police arresting and violently treating of the students demonstrates a textbook example of violence against civilians which is in stark contrast with the pro-freedom and liberal poses of the French government.
“As far as we have read in history, France has been moving toward freedom and justice since the great revolution of 1979. A change that toppled the monarchy of Louise XVI, and finally led to the formation of a republic establishment in that country,” Iranian students say in their letter.
“As far as we have read in history, the French people were fed up with the wrongs and the class discrepancy imposed by the well-off class and the royal family on the impoverished people, and all their rightful protests started with fighting against the wrongs and tyranny of the Royal House,” they added.
“Now, it has been 2 centuries since then, and these days again those protests have returned to the streets of Paris. However, this time people have worn yellow vests in a symbolic move to be seen and heard by the French government; it reminds us of the Great Revolution in France,” they highlighted, drawing a comparison between the current public protests and the call for democracy in the late 18th century.
“It is true that we are teenagers with incomplete and uncomprehensive understanding of politics, but as we have heard from Europeans, France is the country of freedom and the cradle of democracy,” it said.
“Mr. Macron! In your country, which is claimed to be the cradle of democracy, where weird pretexts and excuses of preventing religious missionaries are used to deprive Muslim women and girls from wearing hijab, a huge number of teenage students along with hundreds of thousands of people who are protesting against the bad conditions in their country are holding huge rallies voicing their discontent with the current situation. Do you know how the government under your baton has treated these protestors? Crackdown, ties hands, beating and punishment for students,” the signatories criticized the mistreatment of the protestors.
“Mr. Macron! We, the members of the Islamic Association of Tehran, which is the oldest student organization in Iran, voice our strong protests against the insulting and offensive maltreatment of our counterparts in Paris, and besides that, hold the French government responsible for this heinous event. We are sorry for you who does not have mercy for school students and grab their backpacks and ties their hands, instead of being open to criticism, and letting opposite voices to be heard,” they lash out at Macron for not welcoming the voice of the critics.
“We are hopeful to see a day of worldwide justice in the future. A day, in which, you are assuredly ashamed of what you have done and the pro-justice students are proud of what they have done,” concludes the message.
The demonstrations over the tax hike have been plaguing Paris and other major French cities since mid-November.
French police fired tear gas and water cannon in Paris on Saturday, trying to stop thousands of people from converging on the presidential palace to express their anger at the high costs of living and Macron. Protesters smashed store windows and set fires around the French capital and clashed with police.
At least 135 people were injured in the demonstrations on Saturday, including 17 police officers, while, throughout France, over 1,700 demonstrators were detained.
The protests, spearheaded by activists wearing yellow vests, were mired in violence last Saturday. The rallies saw over 130 people injured and at least 412 arrested. Four people, including an elderly woman, died amid the fierce clashes between rioting demonstrators and police.
Following last weekend’s riots in central Paris and dozens of other cities and towns across France, the government decided to abandon its plan to raise the fuel tax next year. But protesters want the French president to go further to help hard-pressed households, including an increase to the minimum wage, lower taxes, higher salaries, cheaper energy, better retirement provisions. Some of them have demanded Macron’s resignation. They say he is part of an elitist coterie that neither understands, nor cares how they live.