How many British people have ever visited Iran? How many have lived there or have second homes there?
I suspect the figures are very small. It’s quite a contrast with France. In 2018, it was revealed that France came top in a survey of countries which Britons had visited. 76% of Brits had been to France at some time in their lives. According to the UK government’s own website, about 17m Britons visit France each year.
The last time I went to France was in October. Then there’s the expats. In 2017, France was home to 190,000 UK-born people. For many Brits, a year (or more) in Provence is a reality.
Now let’s pretend you’re a UK news editor. You’d think it would be reasonable to assume that British TV viewers would be more interested in mass anti-government street protests in France, a country they know very well, than in faraway Iran, wouldn’t you?
Yet, the reality is that while this weekend’s anti-government protests in Iran (over the unintentional shooting down of a Ukranian airliner), led the news bulletins and were the top story for all Sunday on the BBC website, the coverage of the protests in France, and a nationwide strike over pension reform, has been scant.’