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Iran’s Rouhani vows for peaceful protests, rejects violence 

Tehran, Jan 1 (IANS) Iran’s President has admitted that the Iranian people have the right to express themselves peacefully in his first comments on the anti-governmental protests.

“Iran is a free nation, and according to the constitutional laws, the people have the right to express their criticism and protest,” the state-run IRNA news agency cited President Hassan Rohani as saying.

However, Rohani said that the aim of these protests should be to improve the situation in the country and people’s lives.

Iran’s President also slammed the comments made by his US counterpart, Donald Trump, regarding the rallies.

“Anyone who calls the Iranian people terrorists does not have the right to sympathize for the people,” Rohani said.

Rohani made these remarks on Sunday during a cabinet meeting after four days of protests against price increases and corruption.

Two people died on Saturday in the western Iranian province of Lorestan during the protests, the deputy governor of the province Habibollah Khojastepour said.

Khojastepour said the death of the two civilians on Saturday night in the city of Dorud in Lorestan, adding that the authorities wanted to disperse the demonstrations peacefully, according to the semi-official ISNA news agency.

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