A group of Chinese influencers in Iran

Chinese Influencers' Upcoming Visit To Iran Sparks Criticism

Sunday, 03/03/2024

Iran's plan to host 20 Chinese influencers has been slammed as a ploy to portray the country in a more positive light amid arbitrary arrests of foreigners.

Moslem Shojaie on Sunday announced the forthcoming visit of 20 Chinese influencers to Iran within the next two weeks, a propaganda visit to show the regime in a positive light.

Shojaie stated that the influencers, boasting "over 60 million followers" on social media, will embark on a journey across various cities under the project title "Hello Iran," aiming to generate pro-Iranian content on social media platforms.

"The Hello Iran project is planned and implemented in 12 provinces of the country with four themes: nature and climatic diversity, historical and cultural heritage, the Silk Road, and cuisine," added Shojaie.

The move by the Iranian government to grant travel permits to Chinese influencers comes in light of the detention of numerous Western travelers. The discrepancy sheds light on the regime's alleged hypocritical and discriminatory practices towards foreign visitors based on political affiliations.

While Western travelers have often faced arbitrary arrests and even espionage charges for exploring Iran's cultural heritage, the government's embrace of Chinese influencers illustrates a contrast in treatment. Critics argue that the preference for Chinese influencers reflects Iran's prioritization of economic partnerships over human rights and international norms.

Despite its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, Iran continues to grapple with challenges in attracting foreign tourists, exacerbated by its history of detaining foreigners and dual nationals, along with societal constraints imposed after the Islamic Revolution of 1979.

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