Multiple protests have recently erupted in various cities across Iran, following the 100 to 400 percent increase in the prices of bread and other staple goods.
Having previously experienced a price increase of gasoline in November 2019, which sparked a nationwide uprising, the Iranian regime’s officials, fearing a popular backlash, are blaming this increase on international events and fictitious factors.
On May 9, Iran regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei defended the regime president’s economic policies and said, “Today, the work that the government is doing in the field of economy is important and needs the help of everyone, that is, all the institutions, the various branches, the people, the groups must all help the government, God willing, to achieve these results. Patience is also necessary.”
Read More: A Part of Khamenei’s Economic Empire in Iran
Contrary to Khamenei’s claims, in a speech in the regime’s parliament, Behzad Rahimi referred to the poverty and hunger of the Iranian people, saying, “After eliminating meat, rice, fruit, pasta, nuts, and fancy bread, how can we respond to the increase in pasta by several hundred percent? Before they shrunk the people’s purchasing power, do not make any compliment, and officially announce that people should clean up their tables and eat dry bread while standing up.”
The truth is that the Iranian regime is running a killing machine, starting with the mass execution of political prisoners in 1988, then the killing of 1,500 people in November 2019, and finally with the help of the expansion of the coronavirus. Now it seems that this trend is continuing, with high prices of everyday goods being unaffordable for most people, the regime is practically forcing starvation on society.
Raisi desperately tried to defend the performance of the government, saying, “The issue of people’s lives during the coronavirus was a serious concern. 700 Iranian families were grieving every day.”
He has forgotten that over the past two years, the Iranian government never announced such a statistic, and he neglected to mention that they refuse to announce the real number of the people slaughtered during the November 2019 protests, fearing the furious reaction of the Iranian people.
However, inadvertently, he confirmed the statistics that had previously been announced by the Iranian Resistance, which was more than a half-million people.
On August 24, quoting Dr. Holakouee, a professor at Tehran University of Medical Sciences, the regime’s state-run daily Shargh wrote, “The death toll should be two and a half to three times the official number. But I say you can increase the death toll up to seven times.”
Raisi ridiculously claimed that around 300,000 rials [~$1] would be available in living aid to the people, but did not state when or how this would be achieved and implemented nationwide.
He said: “At the beginning of the year, we want to have a price change for some basic goods. It is currently planned that such support will be given for two months, then it will be turned into an electronic coupon. It will be a living aid for a month or two until the technical infrastructure for the electronic coupon is fully prepared.”
Barely a day after Raisi’s remarks, the regime’s minister of agriculture stated, “Because the necessary infrastructure is not available for the allocation of the coupon, cash deposits will be made.”
The state-run daily Tejarat News were quick to quote one of the regime’s economists in their publication, who warned that, “New cash subsidies cannot be withdrawn.”
Jalil Rahimi Jahanabadi, a member of the regime’s parliament, warned the regime about the people’s fury on his Twitter account and said, “Releasing the price of flour and calculating it at the world rate in dollars; It is a big mistake. If people’s expenses are to be at world prices, their income must be at the world level and in dollars too, not the worthless rials. Let’s not test people’s patience. The threshold of people’s tolerance has reached the lowest possible level for years.”
Immediately after the price of flour was increased by five to ten times, the regime promised the Iranian people that with more cash subsidies, it would prevent the transfer of the cost of increasing the price of bread to them. According to the regime’s Minister of Economy, around 77 million people in Iran are entitled to receive a ‘living subsidy’. The supposed amount of the subsidy for about 30 percent of those people is 400,000 rials [~$1.33], while for a further 60 percent, the subsidy will be 300,000 rials.
Discussing the ridiculousness of providing subsidies to 77 million people, the regime’s Telegram channel Chand Sanieh wrote that a number of households will not be entitled to receive any subsidy. They said these included, “Families who have made three foreign trips in the last four years, families who have a car over 300 million rials [~$1,000] or a public car over 400 million rials [~$1,333] , those whose income is over four million rials and a family of five whose income is over eight million rials per month.”
As a result of this subsidy, workers’ wages will be not increased. In addition to that, teachers and other employees, except government employees and nurses, will not be eligible to receive any subsidy. Therefore, the regime’s promise to provide living subsidies for 77 million people is a lie.
Fearing the people’s reaction, the regime’s interior minister has said, “People receive subsidies for the increase in the price of these four basic commodities,” while the minister of agriculture has claimed that the increase in the price of some products would be offset by the payment of subsidies.