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Tehran's Bazaar Goes on Strike as Iran's Currency Collapses

Strike in Tehran's Bazaar, Source: Green City

Baztab, an Iran-based website, reports that Tehran's Bazaar went on strike on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 as merchants and shopkeepers protest against the free fall of the national currency. The Iranian rial hit an all-time low against the US dollar on Tuesday, as one dollar exchanged to about 34,000 rials. According to Baztab, the Iranian regime tried to counteract the rise of foreign currencies by filtering websites announcing the exchange rates, such as Mazane.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told reporters on October 3, that the slump was the result of the “temporary problem” of the international embargo on importing Iranian oil.

Protests back on the streets

A video on YouTube shows “shopkeepers are on strike at the Bazaar in Tehran”:

Here is a protest gathering in Tehran:

Iranian blogger Sedaiazad writes that according to the news coming from Iran, people gathered in Toopkhoneh Square in Tehran and broke vitrines of several stores.

Protest and strike in Tehran's Bazaar source: Green City

Bayandeandishe writes that protesters clashed with security forces in Istanbul Square in Tehran, and that they moved towards Ferdowsi Square in the center of Tehran. Protesters chanted “Down with Syria!”.

This slogan is most likely inspired by the fact that many Iranians blame the Iranian government for (allegedly) supporting the Syrian regime financially at a moment when their own country is in need of cash. Also, it may be a less direct way of criticizing the Iranian government which does not tolerate dissent.

Xcalibur says family members who work at the Bazaar informed him about the strike and the people chanting slogans. So far security forces did not intervene.

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