Parvaneh Salahshouri, a member of Iran’s Majles, said in a speech before the Majles that was published on Telegram on December 9, 2019 that the recent demonstrations in Iran have been mostly carried out by young people who want jobs and good lives. She accused the government of having abandoned most of the public and she criticized the Expediency Council, the Guardian Council, the National Security Council, the Virtual Space Council, the Council for Cultural Revolution, and the Joint Tripartite Council for having overlapping authority and for shunning responsibility. She expressed criticism of the fact that the Majles played no role in recent events even though it is supposed to represent the people and she said that the decision makers in Iran’s “less-than-ideal” government are out of touch with the people. Calling on the Majles to serve the public, Salahshouri said that she cannot accept the killing of young Iranians, even if they might have been infiltrated by foreign influence. She added: “Let us believe this is the end of the cold season and not its beginning.”
Following are excerpts:
Parvaneh Salahshouri: My dear compatriots: The demonstrations of 1999, 2009, December 2017, and November 2019 were demonstrations that always had demands. Today, the demonstrators are mostly young people who are looking for jobs and for good lives, from a humane and social perspective.
Unfortunately, except for a privileged minority, we have abandoned the rest of the public.
There is complete rebellious tyranny everywhere. All of the parallel governing bodies are bragging about their power, including the Expediency Council, the Guardian Council, the National Security Council, the Virtual Space Council, the Council for Cultural Revolution, and the Joint Tripartite Council. Indeed, where is the body that represents the people [the Majles]? Regarding the [governing] bodies, their responsibilities [overlap] two, three, and four times over. How many governments? How many intelligence agencies? How many parallel bodies? At the end of the day, we are talking about a dual regime that evades responsibility and runs the state by saying: “Who did that? It wasn’t me…” The tearing of the social fabric, the lack of social trust, the lack of social capital, social schisms, and gender schisms are all caused by the less-than-ideal government in this country. Unfortunately, the decision makers in Iran do not know what happens on the ground in society and what developments have taken place in recent decades. Surely, had they been amongst the public, they would have sensed the poverty, the lack of resources, and the cries of the public.
We should be accountable before the mourning mothers and suffering fathers who feel ashamed before their children. If God and the nation gave us power, we must not exploit that power to advance our personal tastes. Let us listen to the public before it is too late. Imam Khomeini said in a speech in Behesht-e Zahra: “When I look at some of those who lost their children, I feel heaviness on my shoulders, and I cannot bear it.” How can I, as a representative of the people, accept the killing of the young people of my country, even if they might have been infiltrated by foreign influence? How can I once again take upon myself the responsibility to represent the public?
Speaker: Thank you very much…
Parvaneh Salahshouri: Let us believe that this is the end of the cold season, and not its beginning.