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Iranian opposition groups returned to the streets on February 14 after more than a year of staying quiet. Their last protest before that came in the wake of the contested 2009 presidential election, and it was put down brutally. That they were willing to return is testament to their lingering resentment of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s regime. The following day, members of Iran’s parliament urged the judiciary to try opposition leaders Mirhossain Moussavi and Mehdi Karroubi and sentence them to death. They have been detained and remain under house arrest but the protest movement has continued: Sunday February 20 saw renewed clashed between security forces and activists of the opposition’s Green Movement. Protesters returned to the streets on Tuesday March 1 amid reports that Moussavi and Karroubi had been arrested and taken to prison, but the demonstrations in Tehran were dispersed by police using tear gas.


Political system: republic
President: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – 2005 / …

Capital : Tehran
Population: 73.9 million
Human Development Index1: 70th
Unemployment: 14.6%

1 HDI is calculated according to factors such as schooling, life expectancy and gross national income and is used by the UN’s Development Programme for its Human development reports.

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