Iran's Exiled Prince Says Strikes Sign Of Unity In Civil Disobedience
Iranians aspire to be citizens and not “Khamenei’s slaves and vassals”, Iran’s exiled Prince Reza Pahlavi said in a statement released on Saturday praising the ongoing strikes and protests as a sign of “unprecedented national solidarity in civil disobedience.”
The heir to the last Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi has adopted a platform of civil disobedience against the Islamic Republic. He calls for the abolishment of the clerical state and referendum by the people to decide the future political system in Iran.
In his message the prince praised strikes spearheaded by contract workers in the oil and petrochemical sectors that started three weeks ago and joined by other workers from more than 100 state-affiliated companies. He said that labor action coupled with different protests by retirees, farmers and the general population are a sure sign of solidarity in civil disobedience.
On the same day, an exiled opposition group, the National Council of Resistance of Iran held protests in Berlin and elsewhere demanding the prosecution of the Islamic Republic's newly elected president, Ebrahim Raisi, who is accused of crimes against humanity. Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered a message to the protesters, describing the low turnout in Iran’s June presidential election as "in fact, a boycott and the regime knows it". "This is a show laid bare for the entire world to see," Pompeo said.
Although there is little cooperation or coordination between the followers of Reza Pahlavi, the Resistance Council and other opposition groups, they all share the same goal of dismantling the Islamic Republic.
The exiled prince urged the people of Iran to boycott the regime and refuse cooperation with the Islamic Republic. “On this path we are united and affectionate with each other. Our arms are open to those who leave the ranks of the enemies of Iran and join the nation.”
Highlighting official religious, gender and ethnic discrimination by the government, Reza Pahlavi said that there are two fronts, those fighting for Iran and those cooperating with the Islamic Republic. In the front fighting for Iran all are welcome regardless of their religion, beliefs, language and ethnicity.
Although his supporters and many nostalgic Iranians support the return of the monarchy, Reza Pahlavi in March shocked the public by backing the establishment of a secular republic in Iran, in a leaked audio recording. But he has kept up his campaign against the regime and is considered the leading political figure in the Iranian opposition.
On July 8 Reza Pahlavi in an unprecedented move met the leaders of 50 major Jewish-American organizations asking them to help keep the pressure on the Islamic Republic and support those opposing the clerical regime.
Former president Donald Trump exited the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and imposed crippling sanctions that have plunged the economy into a deep crisis. But President Joe Biden has said he wants to re-join the agreement, which would mean lifting most of Trump’s sanctions. Critics say this would be windfall for an anti-American regime that will use the money to further its goals.