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12/16/2019 Iran (International Christian Concern) – A report released today by Amnesty International details how thousands of Iranians have been detained by the government as part of a harsh post-protest crackdown. Within the opening days of the November protests, at least 304 people were killed and thousands injured. Following this brutal crackdown, the authorities instituted a nation-wide campaign designed to instill fear amongst civilians in an attempt to discourage them from further protesting. A spokesperson for Iran’s parliamentary committee for national security said that 7,000 people were arrested.

This campaign did not immediately stifle the protests as the regime had hoped. The government attempted to control the narrative by saying that protesters were “villains and rioters” associated with foreign powers, and that protest leaders deserve the death penalty. Still, the protests did not stop. The regime has not turned away from this language, but has since attempted to better “justify” why hundreds of protesters were killed and thousands detained. They have since acknowledged that innocent people may have been wrongly arrested.

Thus far, the turmoil caused by the protests appear to have distracted the regime from pursuing a common practice during the Christmas season. The mass arrests of Christians are standard during this time of the year, but few public reports have surfaced thus far. It underscores at how stretched thin the regime currently is when it comes to harshly maintaining the kind of Islamic society which gives the regime its identity.

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