Twitter silences protest videos from Teheran, sides with Obama backers of regime

by WorldTribune Staff, January 4, 2018

Twitter has restricted the account of a dissident who has streamed video of protests in Iran, which includes footage of Iranian security forces shooting protesters.

Twitter blocked some viewership for London-based dissident Potkin Azarmehr, whose videos have also shown demonstrators shouting anti-regime chants, some of which call for the end of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s rule.

Iran has imposed tighter than usual restrictions on Internet access to curb the distribution of images, videos and reports about the nationwide protests. / EPA

“Supporters of the Iranian regime have reported me to Twitter and once again the Twitter twits have obliged,” Azarmehr said.

Former Obama national security adviser Susan Rice over the weekend tweeted a New York Times op-ed that said President Donald Trump should remain quiet and not voice support for Iranian protesters.

A review by The Washington Times of Azarmehr’s tweets show that he has posted video of scenes of Iran’s security forces, led by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), cracking down on, and sometimes shooting, protesters.

“The Western media have generally characterized the protests as a campaign for better jobs,” Rowan Scarborough noted in a Jan. 2 report for The Washington Times. “U.S. conservatives charge that The New York Times and other Western media are siding with the hardline Islamic rule in Teheran.  U.S. mainstream media regularly refers to Iranian rulers as ‘moderates.’ ”

President Barack Obama “committed his presidency to Iran outreach, culminating with the 2015 nuclear deal that freed up hundreds of millions of dollars for Teheran,” Scarborough wrote.

“The Obama administration maintained a policy of total silence during the Iranian protests in 2009 that were put down brutally by the regime.”

The National Council of Resistance of Iran, the Europe-based largest Iran opposition group, said that at least 30 people had been killed in six days of protests.

Shahin Gobadi, a resistance spokesman, provided this statement to The Washington Times:

“As of Sunday night, more than 1,000 protesters have been arrested throughout Iran. The governor of Teheran has announced that 450 protesters have been arrested in Teheran alone. The actual number is much higher.

“The regime has resorted to more brute force for suppression and yesterday the Judiciary Chief threatened that there would be a harsher crackdown. The mullahs are also trying to intensify their censorship by cutting off the people’s access to social media so that the world would not know what is going on.”

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