The US secretary of state says that the Islamic Republic has a deeply incorrect understanding of its people and is trying to blame others for the current protests.
Antony Blinken said one of the “profound mistakes” that the “regime makes is in accusing the United States or any other country” of somehow being “responsible for, instigating what’s happening. That’s not at all the case. And to misunderstand their own people is at the heart of the problem that they’re facing.”
He made the comments in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, stressing “What’s happening in Iran is first and foremost about Iranians, about their future, about their country. And it’s not about us.”
“The regime [tries] to point the finger at others, at the United States, Europeans, claiming that we’re somehow responsible for instigating or otherwise fanning the flames of the protests. That is to profoundly, fundamentally misunderstand their own people,” underlined Blinken.
Anti-government protests in Iran began on September 16 following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody.
Blinken in a separate interview with NBC also stressed that Washington supports Iranians right to protest, saying “the most important thing that we can do is first to speak out very clearly ourselves in support of the people’s right to protest peacefully, to make their views known, and as I said, to take what steps we can take to go after those who are actually oppressing those rights, including through sanctions.”