The continued demonstrations against the Iranian regime for the third month, following the killing of the Kurdish girl Mahsa Amini, raised many questions about the future of the regime.
The killing of the young woman, Mahsa Amini, ignited demonstrations approaching their fourth month without any signs of retreat, and exposed the regime in Iran to the strongest internal pressures since it came to power in 1979.
Banners calling for “the overthrow of the regime and the departure of the clerics from power” were the most prominent and frequent slogans during the demonstrations, which the authorities failed to suppress despite the security forces’ use of various types of weapons, which left thousands dead, wounded, and detained so far.
The continuation of the demonstrations and the participation of various segments of the people, especially women, sparked a wave of sharp divisions within the regime and calls for recognition of the protesters’ demands, speculation about the future of the regime, and expectations of its imminent departure during the next year.
Reuters news agency reported on severe difficulties facing the regime, and that it is currently going through the worst crisis since it came to power in 1979, expecting the regime to be overthrown next year.
The British agency said that the popular anti-regime protests that began in mid-September will not subside, and are expected to increase in the coming days.
Reuters presented “women” and “youth” as leaders of the nationwide protests, noting that “internal political crises could give Western powers an opportunity to intensify pressure on Iran’s nuclear programme.”
Reuters was not alone in speculating on the future of the regime. Former US National Security Adviser John Bolton published an article on the protests in Iran and the future of the regime.
In the article, which was recently published by the British newspaper The Telegraph, he asked, “Is the regime in Iran about to fall?”, advising the West to support the protests.
“The Iranians are resisting several years of oppression, and to achieve success, the West must support their struggle,” he said, noting that “the killing of the Kurdish young woman, Mahsa Amini, sparked demonstrations in Iran without any signs of retreat.”
And the former US National Security Adviser believes that the protests represent direct ideological challenges to the legitimacy of the regime, and for this reason the risks are very high, and they are much higher than what were the previous protests such as in 2009 against the fraudulent elections.
At least 500 people, including dozens of children, have been killed, thousands arrested, and an unknown number injured in the “violent” repression of demonstrators by security forces over the past three months. The authorities have recently executed two demonstrators, and more than 20 others have been sentenced to death. and prolonged imprisonment.
The ruling authorities in Iran refuse to recognize any popular protests, and usually link these protests and demonstrators to foreign parties, which allows the security services to continue repression.
Iran is living in very bad economic conditions as a result of Western sanctions and the continuous collapse of the local currency, and the removal of subsidies on basic commodities by the government of President Ibrahim Raisi has caused the people to grow discontented.
According to official Iranian reports, half of Iranians live below the poverty line due to the decline in their purchasing power due to the poor economic conditions.