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Tag This: Thousands of protesters gathered Saturday in Iran, furious at their government’s admission that it had accidentally shot down a Ukrainian passenger jet, killing 176 people.
Why it matters: “The public anger puts further pressure on Iran’s leaders, already challenged by the U.S. sanctions that have prompted an economic crisis and helped trigger public protests. As domestic anger simmered, Iran faced more criticism for its handling of the protests abroad” The New York Times notes.
- From Ukraine: President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, in his first reaction to Iran’s announcement, said his country would “insist on a full admission of guilt” by Tehran.
- From Canada: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada, home to many of those aboard the destroyed jetliner, demanded a “full and complete investigation” and said “Iran must take full responsibility.”
- From the U.S.: Later Mr. Trump, in his own Twitter message, warned against what he called “another massacre” of protesters in Iran, an apparent reference to the deadly repression of demonstrators there in November.“
Despite President Trump’s public warning, “videos emerged online Monday that purportedly show Iranian police and security forces firing live ammunition to disperse demonstrators protesting against the Islamic Republic” Fox News writes.
These videos, which were verified by The Associated Press, “show a crowd of demonstrators near Azadi, or Freedom, Square fleeing as a tear gas canister landed among them. People cough and sputter while trying to escape the fumes, with one woman calling out in Farsi: “They fired tear gas at people! Azadi Square. Death to the dictator!'”