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Rouhani Challenges Iran's Hardliners With Call for More Freedoms

  • President has failed to deliver on vows to ease social rules
  • Rallies are latest battleground between moderates, hardliners
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Abrahamian Says Budget Cuts Sparked Protests in Iran

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the anger that led to a week of anti-government protests exposed the need for the greater freedoms he has long championed, as well as a stronger economy.

Conservatives have portrayed the demonstrations across the nation as proof that Rouhani’s economic policies have failed to improve living standards for the majority, in the latest clash between the two power blocs tussling for supremacy in Iranian politics. In comments to Iran’s cabinet on Monday, he attempted to ascribe the anger to a broader disenchantment.