TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) -President Rouhani said in a cabinet session on Saturday that people have the right to voice constructive criticism which is different from destroying public properties and added that the government will not tolerate anyone who attempts to provoke unrest.
President Rouhani discussed the recent public protests in Iran and said “we are a free nation and people are free to voice their protests according to the constitution. At the same time, we need to be aware that criticism should be expressed in a way so as to change the situation for the better.”
Rouhani highlighted the fact that some of the economic difficulties people face today have their roots in earlier years and some other have sprang from recent times and added “the government and the public should work hand in hand and help each other. The people, however, are not merely critical of their economic conditions. Their protests are also against corruption and lack of clarity.”
President Rouhani said that people call for a more serious fight against corruption and require clearer explanation of problems and added “people have an inalienable right to voice their criticisms of the affairs of the country and we believe that the government and the country belong to the people and they must have the right to express their demands.”
President Rouhani stressed that constructive criticism is different from destroying public properties and said “while we support criticism and recognize people’s right to stage demonstrations and voice their protests, we should avoid a situation when the followers of the revolution and the public become concerned about their security.”
He referred to the satisfaction expressed by the enemies of the revolution, especially Donald Trump, and added “this man in the US who pretends to have sympathy for our people today should keep in mind that he was the one who called the Iranian nation terrorists months ago. This man who is against Iranians wholeheartedly has no right to feel sympathy for the people of Iran.”
Rouhani said that certain Arab countries in the region who have always been against Iran are rejoicing today and called national security, peace, unity, solidarity and fraternity in Iran as the most treasured characteristics of the Iranian nation.
President Rouhani asserted that the government is determined to fulfill the promises it made to the people and added “all the social and economic indicators show that compared to four years ago, we have made progress.”
“It is true that we have taken steps forward, but the decline in people’s economic conditions has not been compensated for yet. People still have problems that need to be addressed,” he added.
President Rouhani urged the youth and the people of Iran to focus on finding solutions to problems and added “we are dealing with air pollution, shortage in water resources, employment problems and economic, social and political difficulties. We have to deal with corruption and all the people must have the opportunity to monitor our measures.”
He called all the security officials and the police force to adopt a policy of tolerance toward people and refrain from resorting to violence. He also asked government officials and the executive bodies in the country to share their problems with the public saying “if there is a shortage of a certain product that needs to be imported, officials should take necessary measures before the shortage influences the public; if illegal financial institutions have caused problems, the governor of the central bank of Iran must be the first one to provide explanations to the public. If we have environmental problems, we have to discuss it with the public. No official can fulfill his responsibility without having a constant interaction with the public.”