IRAN

Ahmadinejad heckled by jobless crowd

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was interrupted by crowd members shouting “unemployment, unemployment” during a speech on Monday.

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Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was interrupted by crowd members shouting “unemployment, unemployment” during a speech on Monday.

Images: IRINN.

The president was visiting the port city of Khorramshahr, near the Iraqi border, to commemorate a key battle in the Iran-Iraq War. Ahmadinejad’s speeches are regularly transmitted live by the Iranian state channels and the crowd is often heard chanting “Death to America” or “God is greatest”.

The rare display of dissent comes in the run-up to the anniversary of the contested presidential election on 12 June last year. Opposition leaders have applied for permission to organise a pro-human rights rally where they plan to call for the release of political prisoners.

According to official statistics, the unemployment rate is 11%. In reality it could be much higher.