According to the media, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has pardoned tens of thousands of prisoners, including many linked to recent anti-government protests in the country. According to the details, the pardons come on the eve of the anniversary of the Islamic revolution after the head of the Iranian judiciary recommended remission to those detainees who had been led astray by foreign propaganda and expressed remorse over the action against the state. As said, the people charged with serious crimes including spying for foreign agents, murder, destruction of government property, and sedition as well as dual nationals involved in protests are not entitled to mercy and would receive punishment for their crimes.
The Islamic Republic of Iran has witnessed unprecedented political violence across the country following the death of a Kurdish girl in the custody of Iran’s morality police in September last year. Iranian government used brutal force to suppress the public unrest continuous crackdown of multiple law enforcement institutions including the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Crops (IRGC) failed to put a pause on simmering political agitation against the government. According to the reports, more than 500 demonstrators have been killed, thousands got injuries and around 20,000 have been arrested including four executions. The protests which started to get justice for 22 years old Masha Amni were turned into a popular regime change movement that shattered the foundation of Iran’s revolutionary government in a few months.
The anti-government protests attracted worldwide support while the United Nations, foreign governments, human rights groups, and social activists across the globe urged the Raisi government to observe restraint, engage the demonstrators, preserve the basic rights of its citizens, and resolve the issue peacefully, however, Cleric regime perceived the public uprising a sole phenomenon crafted by the foreign Intelligence and used lethal force to crush public sentiments.
Interestingly, the anti-Iran western bloc including Israel jubilated triumph over the outbreak of anti-regime protests in Iran and offered all possible support to anti-state elements including consistent provocations and propaganda in a bid to overthrow Raisi’s government in Tehran. However, the public uprising got slowed after multiple hangings and dozens of convictions over charges of treason, conspiracy, and working on behalf of enemy agents.
Realistically, the Iranian regime has introduced strict civil and religious laws and put a cap on freedom of expression that created an environment of fear and distrust between the government and the public. The enemy forces always tried to exploit this gap and the same had been done during the current anarchy in Iran. Although, there had been multiple calls within the Iranian administration and scholarly circles that sensitized the regime to probe its weaknesses and rectify its economic and social justice systems so Iran’s adversaries could not seize this opportunity.
The recent decision of Iran’s Supreme leader regarding pardons of protesters is the right step toward an amicable settlement of the issue. In fact, human beings are not mummies or robots that stand alone or work on digital commands, written codes, or eyeball signaling. The free souls have some ambitions, spiritual as well as social needs that require association and expression, hence the clerics should give some space and a tension-free environment to their populaces, so they neither fell prey to the enemy propaganda nor face the high-handedness of leaders, thus both rulers and masses enjoy their rule and living side by side.