Hundreds of Iranians demonstrated on Monday against the soaring price of chicken in Neyshābūr, northeastern Iran, activists reported.
A 30-second video uploaded on Youtube showed hundreds of demonstrators, if not thousands, protesting high food prices. Chants included "Shame on these high prices", "Be ashamed Government", and "Leave the people to be free":
The price of "real" chicken has reached up to 9000 Toman (£4.80) per kilogramme in parts of the Islamic Republic.
In an attempt to bring the price of chicken under control, the government has filled the market with subsidised chickens, prompting interminable queues in places where they are sold (video 2).
The police chief, Esmail Ahmadi-Moghaddam, urged television stations last week to avoid broadcasting images of people eating chicken, saying such pictures could stir up social tensions.
"They show chicken being eaten in movies while somebody might not be able to buy it," he said. "Films are now the windows of society and some people observing this class gap might say that we will take knives and take our rights from the rich. IRIB [the state-run TV] should not be the shop window for showing all which is not accessible."
Iran's economy is under increasing pressure with international sanctions imposed over the country's disputed nuclear program and governmental economic mismanagement. Prices of food and fuel have risen substantially in the past 18 months.
"We will continue to ratchet up the pressure so long as Iran refuses to address the international community's well-founded concerns about its nuclear programme," US Treasury official David Cohen said last week after announcing the blacklisting of 11 companies involved in the country's nuclear programme.
Iran insists its nuclear programme is purely for peaceful purposes.
Photo via Unknown U