Hassan al-Khomeini, the grandson of the first leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, criticized the suppression of the popular protests in the country, warning of the fall of the regime if it did not listen to the demands of the people.
On Sunday in an interview with the Arman newspaper, Hassan Khomeini said that the recent protests broke out for economic reasons and said that failure to meet the demands of the people would have serious consequences that would lead to the fall of the regime.
“These protests are a healthy phenomenon,” he said, adding that “instead of suppressing them, we must listen to the demands of the people, recalling what happened in previous periods during the 1990s, during the protests in 2009, or at the suppression of student protests in 1999.
“The economic demands, which are not political, if not answered will turn into a state of frustration and disappointment in society, which will pave the way for the collapse of the regime or the control of a populist, authoritarian, repressive and elusive government that uses excessive violence but cannot withstand long.”
Khomeini’s grandson is considered a close associate of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and a member of the reformist movement. His candidacy for the February 2016 Iranian Experts’ Council elections in its fifth session was rejected because “he didn’t acquire the diligence degree allowing him to elucidate Fiqh issues to diagnose the winning Walli Faqih with the proper leadership qualities,” as stated by the Council for the maintenance of the constitution, which oversees elections and is dominated by hardliners.
He is not the first person to warn of the fall of the Iranian regime because of the protests, where former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was the first person that warned the Supreme Leader Khamenei in a letter about “the risk of the fall of the regime” in the light of recent protests and ongoing popular discontent and the economic and political pressures.
Rouhani also warned Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei of meeting the same fate of the Shah because of “not hearing the voice of the people,” while defending the era of Khomeini, the regime’s first leader (1979-1989).
Recent popular protests have exacerbated the differences between the different currents of the Iranian regime which have led to an exchange of attacks and accusations among senior officials and personalities in an attempt to escape the dues of the angry masses, which occasionally go out with scattered protest rallies to express their opposition to the regime as a whole.