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Government Media In Iran Say Protest Damage In Hundreds Of Millions Of Dollars


An Iranian man passes Shahriar municipality that was burned during the protests over a fuel price hike in the city of Shahriar, Alborz province, Iran, 20 November 2019.

A website linked to the Islamic Republic Government official daily, Iran, said on Wednesday that the damage to the public properties in the first three days of widespread protests amounted to 23.3 trillion rials (approximately $700 million).

Enraged people have been protesting since November 15 in more than 100 cities in Iran against a large hike in the price of gasoline and voice their disapproval of the Islamic Republic.

The price hike triggered a series of protests across Iran that, in many cases, led to violent clashes between heavily armed security forces, plainclothesmen, and demonstrators.

During the first three days of anti-regime demonstrations, the damage inflicted on 450 bank branches in four cities and eighty chain stores in different regions of the country, as well as destroying forty emergency centers, 180 gas stations, and damages to the infrastructure of the ancient city of Isfahan, central Iran, amounts to $700 million, the official daily reiterated on Wednesday, November 20.

Daily Iran has presented the list at a time when many protesters and opposition activists maintain that "state-related elements embedded within the demonstrators" or acting independently are mainly responsible for setting fire to public properties, including banks, gas stations, and buses.

However, while insisting that several provinces have not yet presented a report on local damages, daily Iran says that the declared damages are equal to 7.5% of the government’s annual profit from the gasoline price increase.

Meanwhile, another state-run website, Mehr News Agency (MNA) has estimated the damage inflicted on gas stations at $19.2 million, bank buildings at $18 million, and emergency centers at $180 million.

Furthermore, chain stores across the country suffered an almost two trillion rials (about $60 million) of damages, and online stores lost nine trillion rials (approximately $270 million) for the internet outage in the country.

In the meantime, the infrastructure of the ancient city of Isfahan, central Iran, also suffered roughly $90 million of damages.

Internet blackout by the government in Iran continues for the sixth day in a row, with large and small businesses losing hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues.

A website monitoring internet across the globe, NetBlocks.org, reported on Wednesday that Iran had only 5% access to the internet outside the country.

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