On Saturday, February 13, the people of Iran staged at least four rallies and protests in various cities, protesting officials’ failure to resolve their dilemmas.

Patients’ families in Tehran, vendors in Kurdistan, villagers in Alborz, and unemployed youths in Khuzestan province held these rallies. Ongoing protests despite the coronavirus outbreak show society’s disappointment about the entire ruling system while they see protests as the sole instrument to obtain their inherent rights.

Rally of SMA Patients’ Families—Iranians continue protests on February 13
Rally of SMA Patients’ Families—Iranians continue protests on February 13

Rally of SMA Patients’ Families

Tehran province—based on prior notice, families of people who suffer from Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) held a rally in front of the Health Ministry. They protested officials’ failure to provide medicine for muscular atrophy.

“Our children have rights for treatment and life,” “Why does Iran not provide reliable medicine so far?” and “Sanctions are only an excuse for not importing the medicine,” was written on protesters’ placards.

SMA is a group of hereditary diseases that progressively destroys motor neurons—nerve cells in the brain stem and spinal cord that control essential skeletal muscle activity such as speaking, walking, breathing, and swallowing – leading to muscle weakness and atrophy.

Rally of Vendors—Iranians continue protests on February 13
Rally of Vendors—Iranians continue protests on February 13

Rally of Vendors

Kurdistan province—a group of street-sellers in Ferdowsi Street in the city of Sanandaj, the province’s capital, held a rally in front of the Provincial Governorate. They protested officials’ failure to follow up their demands.

Back on January 28, vendors had rallied once again at the place. They expressed their discontent about officials’ decisions, compelling vendors to start their businesses after 6:30 pm.

The implementation of the plan has put these poor people in dire conditions. They demanded an increase in their work hours, reasoning that they can earn nothing after 6:30 pm.

“Citizens have purchased their necessities and gone to their houses before 6:30 pm,” said protesters in late January, adding, “We must stare for clients while since the specified time there are no people on the streets. In such circumstances, we cannot provide our living expenditures.”

Rally Against Mine Exploration—Iranians continue protests on February 13
Rally Against Mine Exploration—Iranians continue protests on February 13

Rally Against Mine Exploration

Alborz province—tens of residents of Nasser-Abad-e Kajour village held a rally in front of the lead mine in northern areas. They protested and condemned the continuation of activities of lead and zinc mining exploration.

Notably, residents demanded an end to the mine’s activities due to their harmful consequences on public health. Meanwhile, given the scale of destruction imposed on the environment and natural resources, protesters urged a complete stop to all the mine’s activities, including studies, exploration, and exploitation.

Rally of Unemployed Youths—Iranians continue protests on February 13
Rally of Unemployed Youths—Iranians continue protests on February 13

Rally of Unemployed Youths

Khuzestan province—a group of unemployed youths of Shahrouei village, in a suburb of Behbahan city, staged a gathering in front of the gate of Section-30 of Bidboland Refinery – Phase 2.

They demanded government-linked employers recruit them, asking, “Why do employers take their relatives from different cities but refuse to recruit us as local forces?”

Previously, on December 29, 2020, and January 16 these job-seeker youths had rallied in front of the refinery to be hired by the employers. This is while Khuzestan is Iran’s oil-rich province and benefits from huge natural resources and mines. However, the majority of its population lives below the poverty line.

Iranians Continue Protests; at Least Four Rallies and Strikes on February 10