Exiled Iran opposition figures predict 2023 ‘victory for nation’ after protests

© Kena Betancur, AFP

A group of prominent exiled Iranian pro-opposition figures have issued a coordinated message predicting 2023 will be a year of "victory" with the regime shaken by protests.

Those sending the message include leaders from the fields of culture, human rights and sports.

The Iranian diaspora has long been seen as lacking unity, split into different political factions and strategies for dealing with the Islamic republic, that ousted the shah in 1979.

But with protests still continuing in Iran over 100 days after they were sparked by the death of young Iranian Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini, the message appears an attempt to find a long-sought unity.

"The year 2022 was a glorious year of solidarity for Iranians of every belief, language and orientation," it said.

"With organisation and solidarity, 2023 will be the year of victory for the Iranian nation. The year of freedom and justice in Iran."

The message was sent simultaneously on social media by a variety of figures, ranging from the influential US-based dissident Masih Alinejad to the son of the ousted shah, Reza Pahlavi, who also lives in the United States.

'Hopeful sign'

Prominent actors Golshifteh Farahani and Nazanin Boniadi also tweeted the message, as did Zar Amir Ebrahimi, who won the best actress award at the Cannes Film Festival in France last year.

"We are united to reach freedom," Farahani wrote on her Instagram account. "We will stand together and will not be silent".

The crackdown has seen 476 people killed, according to Norway-based rights group Iran Human Rights.

(AFP)


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