It all began with a water shortage. The people of Khuzestan felt that the government’s mishandling of public resources was partially the culprit for a severe water shortage. Things often start for one reason and continue for another. Once everyone filled the streets of Khuzestan to criticize their government over the water, they decided to air all of their grievances.
The progression was logical. The people felt that water was a human right. While they were on the subject of human rights, they decided to express their desire for better. They openly criticized their leaders and declared their desire for an Iran with more freedoms, where the welfare of the people is a legitimate priority.
The Government Responded with Deadly Force
Amnesty International was able to confirm that at least 8 protestors were killed by police or people within the government looking to quell the chaos in the streets. We don’t know how much higher that number may be because information is significantly throttled.
Amnesty International officials assigned to the region are outright condemning the government’s actions against protestors, rightfully declaring them to be a human rights violation. The government doesn’t want to change the status quo, and it’s more interested in keeping dissent quiet. They’re not above using deadly force to defend their preferred methods.
This mimics China’s history with government intervention within protests. An official death toll is never reported, and legitimate journalists who manage to find credible insider information often come up with numbers significantly higher than the government acknowledges. It would be reasonable to assume that the actual death toll is higher.
We may never know the full scope of the situation because the Iranian government shut down the internet to prevent information from circulating within the country, as well as entering or exiting the country.
The Iranian Government Shut Down The Internet to Keep the Situation Quiet
The internet isn’t shut down all throughout Iran. It seems to only be shut down or severely throttled in highly populated areas where most of the protest action is taking place. The government may be attempting to target protestors, rather than the population as a whole.
Netblocks evaluates internet capabilities for countries around the world. In addition to monitoring who can and cannot go online, they also examine the situation forensically. Netblocks is fairly certain that these outages aren’t a coincidence. They seem to be driven by the powers that be, and their observation of outage activity follows the pattern of protests.
Accessing the Internet from Iran
Freedom of speech and independent reporting is extraordinarily important at all times. It’s most important when governments overstep to the extent where protestors are dying in the streets for voicing their desire for more freedoms.
Any restrictions placed on the internet, as well as surveillance attempts by the Iranian government, can be circumvented through the use of a VPN like TorGuard. Our stealth mode VPN allows people to privately access the internet without allowing service providers or governments to track activity. Enabling stealth mode will prevent governments from even discovering that a VPN was used, reducing suspicion and potential for scrutiny.