He is only voicing support for the protests against economic injustices, not the calls for the downfall of the Islamic Republic, but still, it is significant that a major figure of the Iranian clerical establishment would break ranks.
“Qom’s top legal, religious cleric announces support for Iran protests,” Al Arabiya, December 30, 2017:
A prominent hardline cleric responsible for being one of Iran’s leading reference on Islamic jurisprudence has voiced support for the ongoing protests currently gripping several cities across the country.
Considered the top religious cleric in the city of Qom, Hossein Noori Hamedani, on Saturday supported the popular protests against the high prices and high costs of living in the country.
“The people are demanding their right and we must support them,” Hamedani was quoted by the Iranian media.
He added: “People are demanding their legitimate rights because they suffer from high living costs and the difficulty of living, as well as the spread of unemployment,” calling on the government to work to reduce poverty and unemployment and avoid the anger of the people….