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Iran Poll Shows Only 15 Percent In Tehran Satisfied With Government

Iranian pedestrians cross a street at Valiasr square in Tehran, November 21, 2019

A poll conducted by the state-run Iran Students Polling Agency (ISPA) shows that the level of people's satisfaction with the Islamic Republic's performance is 15 percent in the capital city of Iran.

The poll taken in the Province of Tehran also shows 54 percent of the people believe that anti-establishment protests will continue in the future.

A political activist and former manager of "Ayandeh" (Future) polling institute, Abbas Abdi, has published parts of ISPA's first polling results on the recent protests in Iran in his Telegram Channel.

Just 15 percent of the people in Tehran are satisfied with the current situation in the country, which shows an almost 50 percent drop compared to the outcome of a similar poll conducted two years ago.

Meanwhile, 54 percent of people believe that the country's condition is worsening. Only 16 percent see a positive prospect, and the remainder either say that they do not know, or nothing will change in either direction.

Referring to the mid-November widespread anti-regime demonstrations, 54 percent say that the protest rallies will continue, but 29 percent beg to differ.

In an earlier poll conducted immediately after the unrest in late December 2017-early January 2018, 74.8 percent had expressed their dissatisfaction with the Islamic Republic's performance and Iran's situation.

Furthermore, 41 percent had asserted that they were dissatisfied with the country's situation and would like to participate in future protest rallies.

Based on the data provided by Abbas Abdi, nearly 75 percent have sided with the mid-November protesters, while 84 percent of the youth and 85 percent of people with higher education have also approved the right of protesters to express their opposition to the government.

Furthermore, while 41 percent of the participants believe that such protests will ultimately force the Islamic Republic authorities to amend their policies, 49 percent think otherwise.

Abbas Abdi, who was involved in taking U.S. diplomats hostage 40 years ago but has turned into a reformist critic, has concluded that the outcome of the recent poll indicates "people's desperation." While an absolute majority believe that people should enjoy the right to protest, they insist that anti-regime demonstrations will never bring the desired results.

An overnight three-fold increase in gasoline prices, Abdi says was not the main reason for protests, since only 6% of the people who participated in ISPA's poll have referred to it as their main concern.

The Iranian Students Polling Agency (ISPA), affiliated with the Academic Center for Education, Culture and Research, started its activities in 2001 to meet the needs of policy-making organizations and institutions.

Radio Farda cannot confirm the scientific validity of the poll, since there are no independent pollsters in Iran and their methodology and transparency cannot be evaluated.

However, dozens of social scientists, as well as many Iranians do not trust polls conducted in the Islamic Republic. Local news outlets across Iran bombard their audience with reports of highly-twisted surveys, often conducted online with convenience samples, without much discussion, validity or credibility.