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Facing Soaring Inflation From Sanctions, Iran Weighs TV Chicken-Eating Ban



As a last resort to fight soaring food prices, a top Iranian official has proposed a ban on images of people eating chicken on television.

National Police Chief Esma'il Ahmadi Moghadam suggested that images of chicken should be banned from state television, fearing that they may provoke attacks on affluent Iranians by the underprivileged, reports the Mehr News Agency,

"Films are the now the window to society, and some of those witnessing the class gap may say: "We will take our knives and take our rights from the rich,"" said Moghadam.

The price of a kilo of chicken is now hovering at the $5 mark, compared to $2 before sanctions were imposed by Western governments earlier this month as a cause of Iran's continuing nuclear program.

The government has attempted to offer discounted chicken, which attracts queues of up to 14 hours in some Iranian cities. This video posted on YouTube reportedly shows a rush to buy chicken at a state co-operative.

It was also reported that in a recent broadcast of a film first produced in 1986, where one character mentions the price of clementines, the audio was dubbed in order to conceal the truth about inflation.

However, chicken has become the central symbol of the regime's inability to provide affordable food, with many people venting their anger on social media websites. One Iranian Internet activist, Vahid online, sarcastically wrote: "This program may contain images of cooked chicken..."

A blog from Le Monde reports that journalists from the northern province of Gilan were reassured when they learned they would be able to buy discount chicken with their press cards.

Iranian cartoonist Hadi Heidari made a humorous interpretation of the whole situation on his Facebook page with the following drawing.

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

Wagner Group 2.0: Why Russia's Mercenary System Is Here To Stay

Many had predicted that the death last month of Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin meant the demise of the mercenary outfit. Yet signs in recent days say the private military outfit is active again in Ukraine, a reminder of the Kremlin's interest in continuing a private fighting formula that has worked all around the world.

Photograph of a Wagner soldier in the city of Artyomovsk, holding a rifle.

Ukraine, Donetsk Region - March 24, 2023: A Wagner Group soldier guards an area in the city of Artyomovsk (Bakhmut).

Cameron Manley


“Let’s not forget that there is no Wagner Group anymore,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov had declared. “Such an organization, in our eyes, does not exist.”

The August 25 statement from came less than two days after the death of Yevgeny Prigozhin, leader of the infamous Russian mercenary outfit, as questions swirled about Wagner's fate after its crucial role in the war in Ukraine and other Russian military missions around the world.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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How could an independent military outfit survive after its charismatic founder's death? It seemed highly unlikely that President Vladimir Putin would allow the survival of a group after had launched a short-lived coup attempt in late June that most outside observers believe led to Prigozhin's private airplane being shot down by Russian forces on August 23.

"Wagner is over,” said the Kremlin critic and Russian political commentator Maksim Katz. “The group can’t keep going. There’s the possibility that they could continue in parts or with Defense Ministry contracts, but the group only worked with an unofficial agreement between Putin and Prigozhin.”

Yet barely a month later, and there are already multiple signs that the Wagner phoenix is rising from the ashes.

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