The demonstrators, in their thousands, gathered at the Imam Hossein Square of Tehran on Thursday to denounce any acts of violence and sabotage by domestic rioters and foreign-backed rabble-rousers against the Islamic Republic.
The occasion, known as Dey 9 epic, refers to the huge demonstrations held in Tehran and other cities on the ninth day of the Persian calendar month of Dey, which falls on December 30, in support of the Islamic Republic.
The million-strong rallies restored tranquility to the country after months of political wrangling and foreign-sponsored riots, and ended what the Iranian authorities described as sedition ensuing the presidential election in June 2009.
During the riots, a group of demonstrators offended the Iranian people’s sanctities on the day of Ashura, which marks the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (AS), the third Shia Imam and grandson of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
The unrest was orchestrated by Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Musavi, two of the candidates who had lost the election and claimed that the results had been rigged. Both remain under house arrest on charges of provoking the public and harming national security.
Each year, Iranians mark the occasion with rallies but the demonstrations in the past two years were held by cars and vehicles due to the coronavirus outbreak.
This year’s demonstrations coincided with the third martyrdom anniversary of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, former commander of the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC), and his comrades in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.
On January 3, 2020, the United States assassinated General Soleimani, as well as the deputy commander of Iraq’s popular mobilization units, Abu Mahdi Al Muhandis, in a drone strike near Baghdad International Airport.
Both commanders were admired by Muslim nations for eliminating the US-sponsored Daesh Takfiri terrorist group in the region, particularly in Iraq and Syria.
The US assassination drew a wave of condemnation from officials and movements throughout the world, and triggered huge public protests across the region, with Iraqi lawmakers approving a bill two days after the attack, demanding the withdrawal of all foreign military forces led by the United States from the country.
Moreover, this year’s demonstrations came after more than three months of Western-instigated riots and violent protests following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, an Iranian woman of Kurdish descent.
Amini died in a hospital three days after she collapsed at a police station in Tehran on September 16. An investigation attributed her death to her medical condition, dismissing allegations that she had been beaten by police forces.
In the past three months, and using the protests as a cover, rioters, and thugs — many of whom were later found to have links with foreign parties — have been on a rampage, engaging in savage attacks on security officers, vandalism, desecration of sanctities, and false-flag killings of civilians to incriminate the Iranian police.
The riots also set the scene for terrorist attacks across the country.
‘Enemies aim to take revenge against Iran via sanctions, economic woes’
In a communique issued at the end of Thursday’s rallies, the demonstrators said the street riots are now over in Iran but the enemies have embarked on taking revenge on the nation through sanctions, and disruption of the monetary system and the foreign exchange market with the aim of creating economic problems for the people.
The communique said the enemies, by instilling intensified mistrust into the market, are trying to create a sense of insecurity and cause despair, impose a new wave of inflation on Iran’s economy, ramp up grievances and marginalize the achievements of the Islamic Revolution.
The demonstrators also expressed gratitude to the Iranian Armed Forces and appreciated the efforts and measures by the country’s security and intelligence apparatus in defending national security.
“We will not tolerate any malicious intent against the security and territorial integrity of our country, and in case of any possible threat, we, are fully ready along with the Armed Forces to confront the enemies and to give a response to the aggressor country to make it regret” its measures, the communique noted.
The demonstrators also called for a “decisive and strict” approach towards rioters and perpetrators of violent acts in the country.