Angry Ahwazi bank customers who lost all their money in the latest Iranian bank collapse gathered outside a senior local imam’s home in the regional capital, Ahwaz last Friday (November 29, 2017), protesting at the clerical regime’s hypocrisy and failure to help the victims of the bank crisis.
The protesters chanted, “The Mullah is only a cloak!” suggesting that the regime hides behind a façade of false piety, abusing religion as a cover for its corruption. Demonstrators, some of whom lost their life savings in the latest closure of another regime-backed financial institution, expressed anger and frustration at the Iranian leadership, saying that it has been embezzling the people’s money since coming to power in 1979.
The protests have grown in recent weeks, with many protesters who would once have been too nervous of the regime’s customary harsh repression to condemn its corruption now so frustrated at the government’s failure to compensate them or take action to improve the situation, even while it spends billions on wars across the region, that they are loudly and publicly condemning the leadership in Tehran.
Some speakers at last Friday’s protest loudly expressed their anger, with one shouting, “We’ve got no results, only oppression, in return for asking for the return of our money!” whilst another yelled, “How come the Supreme Leader hasn’t noticed they’ve pocketed our money when he pays enough attention to send Iran’s wealth to the ruins in Iraq? Why should our wealth and the money that belongs to us be sent to Iraq, Lebanon, and Syria while, in our own country, because of poverty and corruption, the young are forced into theft and women become prostitutes because of high costs and miserable lives? Why’s the leader looting our money and sending it to the ruined country of Iraq? Iran itself is a ruin!”