Iranian parliament held a special meeting on deadly protests

Vastavam web: The Iranian parliament held a closed-door meeting today to discuss the deadly protests that hit the country last week, while more pro-regime rallies were held in several cities.Lawmakers interrogated Interior Minister Abdolrahmani Rahmani Fazli, Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi and secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani, parliament’s ICANA website reported.”The parliament is not in favour of keeping Telegram filtering in place, but it must pledge that it will not be used as a tool by the enemies of the Iranian people,” Behrouz Nemati, spokesman for the parliament’s presiding board, wrote on Instagram, which was also temporarily blocked during the unrest.

Many Iranians use Telegram as their main source of news and a way of bypassing the highly restrictive state media, with almost a third of Iran’s 80 million people using the app daily.The protests began on December 28 over economic issues before quickly spiralling out of control and turning against the regime as a whole, leaving 21 dead and hundreds arrested.

Pro-government rallies were again held in several cities today, this time in Qazvin, Rasht, Shahr-e Kurd and Yazd.The rallies are “the people’s response to the rioters and troublemakers and their supporters,” said state television.