White House condemns protest-hit Iran for using lethal force against protesters

Last Updated: Nov 18 2019 17:38
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On Sunday, Iran was condemned by the White House for using lethal force against demonstrators during the unrest that left two dead, a civilian and a policeman, and saw authorities arrest dozens and restrict internet access.

“The United States supports the Iranian people in their peaceful protests against the regime that is supposed to lead them,” White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

“We condemn the lethal force and severe communications restrictions used against demonstrators.” The unrest erupted on Friday, hours after it was announced that the price of gas would rise to 15,000 rials per litre (12 US cents) from 10,000 for the first 60 litres, and to 30,000 rials for any extra fuel bought after that each month.

It is a rise many consumers can ill afford, given that Iran’s economy has been battered since May of last year when President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from a 2015 nuclear agreement and reimposed crippling sanctions.

According to IRNA state news agency, a policeman was shot in a clash with “rioters” in the western city of Kermanshah on Saturday and died the following day, provincial police chief Ali Akbar Javidan said.