World Cup 2022: Iranians cheer on US for home country amid ongoing protests
Amid protests in Iran that have lasted nearly three months, many Iranians were in favor of the United States beating their own country in Tuesday’s World Cup match.
Tuesday’s match was decisive for both teams. Iran would have reached the knockout stage with a draw, while the USMNT needed a win, which they got, to advance.
However, some protesters believe that an Iranian defeat or draw will now hurt the regime on the world stage and fuel the protesters’ fight.
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In an encrypted phone interview with Fox News Digital on Monday, an Iranian woman who went by the name « Mahoora » and lives in southern Iran said, « It’s not just some people in Iran, it’s the majority of Iranians who want the United States to win (Tuesday). [of Iranians] did not celebrate the victory of the regime team over Wales. »
Celebrations took place in many neighborhoods of Tehran, the capital of Iran, as well as in the densely populated cities of Mashhad, Isfahan and Karaj.
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Ali Safavi, a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Paris-based National Council of Resistance of Iran, issued the following statement:
« The jubilant reaction across Iran to the defeat of the regime’s football team tonight reflects above all the degree to which the Iranian people hate and hate the ruling mullahs and want to see him overthrown. They knew the regime was trying to exploit its presence at the World Cup to overshadow the ruthless manner in which it suppressed the nationwide uprising, which left 660 protesters, including at least 60 children, dead and 30,000 (arrested). Has he been so isolated in the eyes of the Iranian people who are more determined than ever to overthrow him. »
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The The United States also moved Iran over the weekend when the United States Soccer Federation briefly erased the Islamic Republic’s emblem from its flag in a social media post in support of the protesters. Iran demanded that the United States be banned from the tournament after the protest.
Fox News’ Benjamin Weinthal and Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.