IRGC forms group to monitor internet in Iran as election approaches

Following Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s speech on the important issues facing the country in the upcoming year, such as the freedom of Internet in Iran, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps announced plans to form groups to make sure these issues are prioritized.

In an open letter to Khamenei following the start of the Iranian new year on March 20, Hossein Salami announced the formation of the Headquarters for Realization of the year 1,400 Nowruz Orders. Salami said that the headquarters will consist of a leadership board which will include the heads of the IRGC and Basij Organization, intelligence officials as well as economic and construction officials linked to the IRGC. 

Some of the top priorities of the group will be to help the country with domestic production, fighting corruption and establishing a presence on the internet. 

Khamenei’s theme for the upcoming year was the “Year of Production: Support and Elimination of Obstacles.” In his Nowruz speech, Khamenei also spent time discussing the internet and social media, outlets he claimed are used by enemy countries to turn people away from the Islamic Republic. “Every country in the world manages the internet,” Khamenei said. “But in our country some take pride in letting the internet be open, whereas this method in no way [should] pride be taken.” This was an indirect criticism of President Hassan Rouhani’s administration, which has advocated for a more open internet in Iran.

Khamenei continued, “People should use the internet, but this space should not be put at the discretion of the enemy.” He added that one method used by enemy countries on social media platforms is to try to lower voter turnout in the country. Iran has a presidential election in June and a high voter turnout is always a gauge for government support according to Iranian officials themselves. In his open letter, Salami said that the new group will “set the internet free of vulgarities.” 

Read the complete article at: Al Monitor

Also read: Iran’s Supreme Leader Praises IRGC As U.S. Alleges Election Meddling

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