protests have taken place in Iran over the crashed Ukrainian Airlines flight 752, after authorities admitted it was shot down as a result of “human error.”
The protests were widely supported by specifically the US and UK. As there were reports that the British Ambassador to Iran Rob Macaire was arrested in Tehran for taking part in the protests.
In a tweet Tasnim news said he had been detained “for organizing suspicious movements and protests in front of Amir Kabir University but released after hours”.
The tweet added he would be “summoned by the foreign ministry tomorrow morning [January 12]”. Tasnim also released footage showing the ambassador attending an illegal gathering.
The Deputy Foreign Minister of Iran, Seyed Abbas Araghchi provided some clarity on the situation.
Regardless, the UK began its calls that Iran had disrespected international laws and that Macaire should immediately be released.
UK Foreign Minister Dominic Raab issued a statement:
“The arrest of our ambassador in Tehran without grounds or explanation is a flagrant violation of international law.
The Iranian government is at a cross-roads moment. It can continue its march towards pariah status with all the political and economic isolation that entails, or take steps to de-escalate tensions and engage in a diplomatic path forwards.”
The US, the other party that is openly supporting the protests in Iran ramped up its regime change rhetoric, with US President Donald Trump even tweeting his “support” of the Iranian people in Farsi.
The semi-official Fars news agency carried a rare report of the unrest, saying up to 1,000 people had chanted slogans against leaders and tore up pictures of Soleimani. If true, approximately 1,000 people protesting isn’t the “large-scale, wide unrest” that the US would like to make it appear as if it is taking place.
And the situation and narrative are quite apparent, the US, with apparent assistance with the UK are attempting to steer the spotlight away from Washington’s assassination of an Iranian official, in disregard of any and all international laws by focusing on a small-scale issue. This is further supported by propaganda in media, as well as social media, claiming that Iran is killing hundreds of protesters, when, at the same time, the protesters number approximately 1,000.
The US is attempting to shift attention away from the fact that for the first time since World War II, the US hasn’t answered a direct attack on its military facilities by a state actor, and instead is attempting to increase pressure on Iran in the diplomatic and media sphere.
The public’s attention is very obviously and intentionally being shifted away from the assassination of General Qassem Soleimani and the fact that Iran provided a response to which the US hasn’t reacted.
At the same time, Iran is attempting to be entirely transparent when it comes to the plane crash and even issued visas to Canadian experts allowed to investigate the incident.