Iran protests including rallies and nationwide strikes by various sectors of the society took an upward turn during 2018.
The nationwide uprising that started on December 28, 2017 in the northeast city of Mashhad spread to almost all Iranian cities and continued into 2018.
The demonstrators have one ultimate demand and that is an end to the current system that has ruled Iran with an iron fist for close to 40 years, destroying the economy and the environment.
During the January 2018 protests, demonstrators chanted “death to dictator”, “death to Khamenei” (Iran’s so called “Supreme Leader”) and “Khamenei shame on you, let go of your rule”, which clearly indicates that Iranians seek an end to the regime.
During 2018, various sectors of the Iranian society initially started their rallies in protest to the dire state of the economy, growing poverty, systematic government corruption, inflation and unemployment. But what started as economic protests quickly turned political and against the Islamic Republic and its leader, Ali Khamenei.
The extent and the increase of the Iran protests indicates that almost all of the 80 million strong population opposes the ruling system, as Iranians blame the regime for Iran’s economic downfall and social harms.
There were 643 recorded Iran protests in January 2018 and an average of 21 protests per day.
The nationwide uprising which spread to 142 cities, started on December 28, 2017 and continued into January 2018. Protesters chanted “death to Khamenei” and “death to dictator”, set fire to Basij bases and pulled down images of the Supreme Leader.
There were 596 recorded Iran protests in February 2018 and an average of 21 protests per day.
There was a total of 422 Iran protests in March 2018 with an average of 14 protests per day.
There was a total of 452 protests in April 2018 with an average of 15 protests per day.
There was a total of 1,093 protests in May 2018 with an average of 35 protests per day.
There were 475 reported protests in June with an average of 16 protests per day.
The highlight of this month was the bazaar merchants’ strike in Tehran and protests by people from all walks of life in Khoramshahr. The protesters’ economic demands quickly turned political with demonstrators chanting “death to dictator”, “death to Khamenei”, “death to Rouhani” and “our enemy is right here, they lie when they say it’s the US” during protests to high prices in Tehran and to water scarcity in Khoramshahr.
Women played a vital role during Khoramshahr protests in the southwest province of Khuzestan.
There were 970 protests and strikes in July 2018 with an average of 31 protests per day in 187 cities and regions in Iran.
There was a total of 622 reported protests in 133 cities, villages, and business and industry regions in Iran with an average of 20 protests per day.
There was a total of 1,367 reported Iran protests in 293 cities, villages and business and industry regions with an average of 46 protests per day.
Truck drivers started their nationwide organized strikes during this month.
There was a record number of 1,533 reported protests in 323 cities, villages, and business and industry regions in October 2018 with an average of 49 protests per day.
October had the highest number of protests compared to other months and was marked with the continuing strike of truck drivers all over Iran, the nationwide strike of teachers which continued for two days and the bazaar merchants strike in various Iranian cities.
There was a total of 911 reported protests in 171 cities, villages, and business and industry regions with an average of 30 protests per day.
During November, truck drivers started another round of strike action while teachers all over Iran went on a two day strike.
Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory workers in Shush and the Iran National Steel Group workers in Ahvaz also started their weeks long strike.
There was a total of 529 reported protests with an average of 17 protests per day by workers, depositors, pensioners, students and prisoners.
The regime heightened its crackdown on labor activists and detained Haft Tappeh sugarcane workers and Ahvaz steelworkers. There were also reports that labor activist Esmail Bakhshi was severely tortured in prison and that prison agents hit his reproductive organs with batons.
Truck drivers also started their fifth round of strike action on December 22.