Nahid Khodajoo Was Sentenced to Six Years in Prison

Posted on: October 16th, 2019

On October 14, 2019, Nahid Khodajo0 was sentenced to a 6-year prison term and 74 lashes by the Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court. Based on the Article 134 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code, the charge with the highest penalty will be considered; this means that she should serve five years in prison.

Nahid Khodajoo is a member of the board of directors of the Free Union of Iranian Workers. She was arrested along with several others during the protest gathering on the International Labor Day on May 1, 2019, in front of the parliament in Tehran. She was released on bail on June 3, 2019.

Her trial was on August 1, 2019 at the Branch 2 of the Revolutionary Court and her final hearing was on August 10 at the Branch 4 of the Evin Prosecution Court. Her lawyer, Manijeh Mohammadi  was present at her final hearing. In the incitement against her, she was sentenced to five years imprisonment on the charge of “assembly and collusion against national security” and one-year imprisonment on the charge of “disturbing public order”. According to the Article 134 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code, the charge with the highest penalty will be considered; this means that she should serve five years in prison for the charge of “assembly and collusion against national security”.

Lay off of 150 Workers of Haft Tappeh and Unpaid Wages of Manjil City Workers

Posted on: October 5th, 2019

According to the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Agro-Industry Labor Syndicate, the contracts of 150 workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Argo-Industry have not been renewed. However, Governor of Khuzestan Province denied the cancellation of these workers’ contracts. The new round of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Argo-Industry workers protests started on September 23, 2019, after 21 other workers of the company were laid off.

According to the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Agro-Industry Labor Syndicate, the name of some of the workers who were laid off are as the following:

Fereidoun Hashemi Mahmoudi, Mohsen Heydari Rad, Jasem Bani Chaab, Tofigh Heydari Al-Kasir, Azim Kasir, Peyman Norouzi, Bashir Al-Kasir, Foad Al-Kasir, Mousa Al-Kasir, Mehdi Al-Kasir, Ahmad Al-Kasir Badavi, Mehdi Sahnavi, Samsam Al-Kasir, Hamid Chenani, Seyed Ghasem Parvaz, Ahmad Kord, Hadi Majdian Nasab, Abas Oghabi, Seyed Ayoub Tafahi, Yaghoub Saadi, Seyed Esmail Jaaveleh, Mansour Saadeh, Adnan Mansouri, Hossein Hamdani, and Yousef Khanehshir.

Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Argo Industry was founded in the 1960s in the city of Shush, in Khuzestan Province. It is the oldest sugar factory in Iran. Since 2015 due to the privatization deal based on article 44 of the constitution was transferred to the present owners. It has four thousand workers and employees and is located 15 kilometers south of the Shush city.

In addition, according to the Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA), Manjil city workers reported that they have not been paid their wages for three months and have unpaid bonuses of 2018. They were complaining that not only they receive the minimum wage but they feel threatened by a lack of job security and unpaid wages .

20 Workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Argo Industry Were Laid Off

Posted on: September 24th, 2019

According to Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA), the contracts of 20 workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcan Argo Industry have not been renewed. According to workers of this company, a notice signed by the administration supervisor, Ebrahim Ouraki, was sent to the several workers regarding the termination of their contract. This notice was sent to these workers on the final day of their contract which contrasts with the promises made by the Khuzestan government officials. Four or five laid off workers gave speeches during the meeting with Ahvaz’s Friday Prayer Imam, Mousavi Jazayeri, and the representative of Wali-Faqih (the Guardianship of the Islamic Jurist) in which they asked for his assistance to resolve the company’s problems.

The name of some of the works who were laid off are as the following:

Mohammad Khanifar, Reza Poorjenani, Saheb Zahiri, Mahmoud Sadi, Adel Abdolkhani, Samir Ahmadi, Hamzeh Al-Kasir, Iman Khezri, Karim Miahi, Fazel Chabizadeh, Ashkan Goudarzi, Masoud Loveymi and seven others.

 

Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Argo Industry

The protests of the workers of Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Argo Industry started on March 28, 2018 in front of the Shush governor compound. Subsequently, the prosecutor’s office of Shush summoned several workers. The workers went to the prosecutor’s office three days later but were informed that their session was rescheduled.  On the same day, 10 protester workers were arrested. The Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane industrial complex union reported the strike of more than five hundred workers of this company from July 29, 2018. The protesters demanded an end to the privatization of the company and alleged houses to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, firing the executive board members of the company, and sustain the current director of the company. These protests periodical continued till August 2018. In November 2018 these protests were accompanied by protests of the workers of Iran National Steel Industrial Group (INSIG) and continued till late December.  Esmail Bakhshi and Ali Nejati are two prominent labor activists of Haft Tappeh Complex who have been arrested during the protests. Bakhshi was arrested in November and was released on bail in December 2018. He was charged with “disruption of public order”, “assembly and collusion against national security”, and “participation in forming a group”, “intended to disrupt public security”. On December 2, 2018 he reported his return to his workplace.

Ali Nejati, who is a labor activist and a member of the managing board of the labor union representing employees of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company, was arrested by security forces on November 29, 2018 on the charges of “disrupting public order”, “collusion and assembly against national security” and “cooperation in establishing a group intended to disrupt peace and security”. He was transferred to the Shush prison on December 24, 2018. He was taken to the Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Baghaei Hospital due to the deteriorating health for his heart. He is suffering from heart disease and a prolonged detention can have dire health consequences and might even endanger his life. In January, his family reported about his inappropriate detention condition. Nevertheless, his verdict was changed to release on bail, but he is still in detention.

On January 4, 2019, Esmail Bakhshi wrote an open letter and spoke out about abuse and torture he suffered in detention from Intelligence Department authorities during his detention. After that, Sepideh Gholian, a civil rights activist who was arrested during workers protests supported him. Bakhshi and Gholian have been rearrested after the broadcast of their under-torture confessions on the national television. They have been transferred from Sheiban and Sepidar prison in Ahvaz to Evin prison in Tehran on April 28, 2018 for their court hearing. In June 2019, a group of Haft Tappeh workers submitted an official complaint to the International Labour Organization regarding the ongoing suppression of protests and the detention of peaceful demonstrators and journalists. They published a list of Haft Tappeh workers or their families who have been summoned, arrested, threatened, or interrogated.

On August 13, 2019, seven workers of this company were sentenced to eight months imprisonment and 30 suspended lashes by the Branch 102 of the Criminal Court of Shush. Moreover, on August 26, 2019, nine workers of this company were sentenced to eight months imprisonment and 30 suspended lashes. On the same day of their demonstration on May 9, 2019, several workers were summoned and arrested. On September 7, 2019, the Revolutionary Court of Tehran sentenced Esmail Bakhshi to a 14-year prison term and 74 lashes and Mohammad Khanifar to six years imprisonment. In addition, Sepideh Gholian, Amir Amirgholi, Amir Hossein Mohammadifard, Sanaz Allahyari, and Asal Mohammadi were sentenced to 18 years in prison, each. Their trial was held in the Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court, in August. Ali Nejati’s case is still open.

Haft Tappeh was founded in the 1960s in the city of Shush, in Khuzestan Province. It is the oldest sugar factory in Iran. Since 2015 due to the privatization deal based on article 44 of the constitution was transferred to the present owners. It has four thousand workers and employees and is located 15 kilometers south of the Shush city.

 

Workers of HEPCO Were Battered and Arrested after a Severe Police Attack

Posted on: September 18th, 2019

On September 16, 2019, the workers of Heavy Equipment Production Company (HEPCO) in Arak were protesting on the railway track of the North-South railway. The demonstration turned violent after the police attack that led to arrest and injury of many protesters. According to the Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Mill Labor Syndicate, police attacked protesters to stop the protest. Some of the injured protesters were transferred to hospital and at least 28 of them were arrested but their identification is still unknown. The protesters demanded their unpaid wages, clarification of their share-holding status, and ownership of the Company.

HEPCO Company was founded in 1974 to manufacture and assemble industrial machinery and to create jobs for eight thousand workers. It currently has only 900 workers and employees who have unpaid wages from 2016. HEPCO was privatized during the first term of president Ahmadinejad and has had two main shareholders who are both unable to perform their duties. HEPCO workers organized a demonstration in May 2018 to protest their unpaid wages. On May 28, 2019, 10 workers were summoned to the Arak’s prosecutor’s  office and a group case was opened for them. Their case was transferred to the Branch two of the prosecutor’s office with charges of “disrupting public order” and “attending unauthorized demonstration”. These workers were arrested the same day and eventually five of them were released on bail. Although the management of HEPCO was transferred to the Ministry of Industry but the issue of unpaid wages of HEPCO workers has not yet been solved. In February, the attorney of several of the workers of Arak HEPCO reported that the cases of seven workers of this company were transferred to the Revolutionary Court.

Seven Labor Activists of Haft Tappeh’s Case Sentenced to 110 Years in Prison and 74 Lashes, Combined

Posted on: September 9th, 2019

On September 7, 2019, the Revolutionary Court of Tehran sentenced Esmail Bakhshi to a 14-year prison term and 74 lashes and Mohammad Khanifar to six years imprisonment. In addition, Sepideh Gholian, Amir Amirgholi, Amir Hossein Mohammadifard, Sanaz Allahyari, and Asal Mohammadi were sentenced to 18 years in prison, each. Their trial was held in the Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court, in August. Ali Nejati’s case is still open.

The collective court session for the detained labor activists of Haft Tappeh’s case was initially scheduled for August 3, 2019 at the Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran led by judge Moghiseh. However, the session was postponed to a later date and was held one-by-one.

According to the verdict issued by the Branch 28 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court led by judge Moghiseh, Esmail Bakhshi was sentenced to seven years imprisonment for the charge of “assembly and collusion aimed to act against national security”, two years imprisonment for “insulting the Supreme Leader”, two years imprisonment for the charge of “spreading falsehood”, one years and half in prison for the charge of “propaganda against the state”, and 1.5 years in prison and 74 lashes for the charge of “disrupting the public order”.

Sepideh Gholian, Amir (Ali) Amirgholi, Amir Hossein Mohammadfard, Sanaz Allahyari, and Asal Mohammadi, each were sentenced to seven years in prison for the charge of “assembly and collusion aimed to act against national security”,  another seven years in prison for the charge of “membership in Gam group”, one year and a half in prison for the charge of “propaganda against the state”, and two years and a half for “spreading falsehood”. According to the article 134 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code, each should serve the sentence for the charge with the highest penalty which is seven years imprisonment on the charge of “assembly and collusion aimed to act against national security”.

Mohammad Khanifar was sentenced to five years in prison for the charge of “assembly and collusion aimed to act against national security” and a one-year prison term for the charge of “propaganda against the state”. According to the article 134 of Iran’s Islamic Penal Code, Mohammad Khanifar should serve the sentence for the charge with the highest penalty which is five years imprisonment on the charge of “assembly and collusion aimed to act against national security”.

The protests of the workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane industrial complex started on March 28, 2018 in front of the Shush governor compound. Subsequently, the prosecutor’s office of Shush summoned several workers. The workers went to the prosecutor’s office three days later but were informed that their session was rescheduled.  On the same day, 10 protester workers were arrested. The Haft Tappeh Sugarcane industrial complex union reported the strike of more than five hundred workers of this company from July 29, 2018 and these protests periodical continued till August 2018. The protesters demanded an end to the privatization of the company and alleged houses to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, firing the executive board members of the company, and sustain the current director of the company. In November 2018 these protests were accompanied by protests of the workers of Iran National Steel Industrial Group (INSIG) and continued till late December.  Esmail Bakhshi and Ali Nejati are two prominent labor activists of Haft Tappeh Complex who have been arrested during the protests.

Esmail Bakhshi was arrested in November and was released on bail in December 2018. He was charged with “disruption of public order”, “assembly and collusion against national security”, and “participation in forming a group”, “intended to disrupt public security”. On December 2, 2018 he reported his return to his workplace. On January 4, 2019, Esmail Bakhshi wrote an open letter and spoke out about abuse and torture he suffered in detention from the Intelligence Department authorities during his detention. After that, Sepideh Gholian, a civil rights activist who was arrested during workers protests supported him. Bakhshi and Gholian have been rearrested after the broadcast of their under-torture confessions on the national television. They have been transferred from Sheiban and Sepidar prison in Ahvaz to Evin prison in Tehran on April 28, 2018 for their court hearing.

On August 10, 2019, the trial of Sepideh Gholian was held at the Branch 28 of Tehran’s Revolutionary Court. In this session Sepideh Gholian claimed that she was subjected to abuse during her interrogation and was forced to confess therefore she does not approve her accusation. Sepideh Gholians attorney, Jamal Heydari Manesh, stated that his client was under pressure during her arrest and interrogation and she was falsely accused. He emphasized that defending the workers’ right is not a crime but one the rights of his client.

Ali Nejati, who is a labor activist and a member of the managing board of the labor union representing employees of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company, was arrested by the security forces on November 29, 2018 on the charges of “disrupting public order”, “collusion and assembly against national security” and “cooperation in establishing a group intended to disrupt peace and security”. He was transferred to the Shush prison on December 24, 2018. He was taken to the Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Baghaei Hospital due to the deteriorating health for his heart. He is suffering from heart disease and a prolonged detention had a dire health consequence and even endangered his life. In January, his family reported about his inappropriate detention condition. Nevertheless, his verdict was changed to release on bail, and he was temporary released on January 28, 2019.

The members of “Gam”, a labor right defendant magazine was arrested by the security forces. On January 16, 2019, Amir Amirgholi was arrested in city of Babolsar and was transferred to the ward 209 of Evin Prison. He was transferred to Ahvaz’s Intelligence department on February 18, 2019 and then transferred to quarantine ward of Sheiban Prison in Ahvaz. Currently, he is in ward four of Evin Prison. Sanaz Allahyari and her husband Amir Hossein Mohammadifar, were arrested on January 9, 2019. Mohammadifar was transferred from the ward 209 in Evin Prison to the ward 4 and Allahyari was transferred to the woman ward of Evin Prison.

Asal Mohammadi, labor activist, was arrested at her home by security forces on the charge of supporting workers’ protests on November 22. On January 5, 2019, she was released on 400 million Tomans [4000 dollars] bail. She was rearrested on August 4, 2019 by judge Moghiseh order. Reportedly, she could not afford the updated set bail of two billion Tomans [200 thousand dollars].

Mohammad Khanifar was arrested during the mass arrest on November 19, 2019 during the protest of workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane and he was released on January 26, 2019. On January 29, he was summoned to Shush’s Intelligence department and was rearrested there. He was released on bail on January 29, 2019. His trial session for another part of this case was held on February 12, 2019 in the Shush Court. In this session his incitement was about the charge of” unauthorized demonstration demanding the change of management of the Haft Tappeh Sugarcan Agro-Industry and the release of Esmail Bakhshi”.

Haft Tappeh was founded in the 1960s in the city of Shush, in Khuzestan Province. It is the oldest sugar factory in Iran. Since 2015 due to the privatization deal based on article 44 of the constitution was transferred to the present owners. It has four thousand workers and employees and is located 15 kilometers south of the Shush city.

Jailed for attending International Workers’ Day Demonstration; Neda Naji has her final trial

Posted on: July 12th, 2019

The final trial of Neda Naji was on July 08, 2019. She was arrested in the International Workers’ Day demonstration on May 1, 2019 along with 10 others. On June 15, 2019 she was transferred from Evin prison’s Ward 209 to the Qarchak prison in Varamin. She is charged with “assembly and collision”, “propaganda against the stat”, “disturbing the public order”, and “disobeying the order or the government officials”.

On July 6, her husband, Jamanl Ameli, wrote on his personal Twitter account that Naji was beaten twice in the prison by a prisoner and a prison official and she was transferred to the health ward in prison because of her blurred vision after the attack. He added that Naji and Atefeh Rangriz are in danger in Qarchak prison.

Naji and 10 other arrestees had participated in a protest in front of the parliament on May 1, 2019. A few of them were released but Neda Naji, Atefeh Rangriz, and Marzieh Amiri are still in prison. Anisha Asadollahi who was released on bail was arrested again on June 18 and was transferred to Evin prison’s Ward 209. Her case is in process at Court Branch 2 of Evin Prison Court. Moreover, Marzieh Amiri’s hearing was on July 3, 2019 and she charged with “assembly and collusion” and “disturbing public order” and the judge refused the request to release on bail.

Four Months Report of Workers’ Conditions in Iran

Posted on: June 20th, 2019

Human Rights Activist News Agency (HRANA) – The following is a four months overview of workers’ rights violations in Iran between February and May 2019, per information compiled and verified by the Statistics, Publications, and Achievements Division of Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRAI).

Domestic restrictions in Iran on independent human rights reporting make it difficult to capture the full extent of these issues on the ground. The following overview draws on the work of HRANA reporters, as well as a network of independent and verifiable sources, including other human rights associations operating outside of Iran’s borders.

 

Monthly Report of Workers in Iran in February 2019

Several workers were arrested and faced trial in February. Also, the purchasing power of workers was steadily decreased in this month. Abdolreza Azizi, a member of the Social Affairs Committee of the Iranian Parliament stated that workers have lost 70 percent of their purchasing power. Tens of workers died or were injured because of the lack of work safety and hundreds of them were laid off. Another ongoing problem for workers was having unpaid wages this month.

The unpaid wages were issues of concern for many of Iranian workers, for instance, workers of Borujerd Saman Tile, nurses of Azadi Hospital in Tehran, Abejdan (in Andika county) municipality workers, workers of Rasht, Sedeh, Ilam, Shadegan, and Parsabad-e-Moghan municipalities, workers of Jahan Vegetable Oil Factory, South Pars Gas Field workers, workers of the Saham-e-Edalat cooperative company, nurses of Namazi Hospital in Shiraz, technical workers of Iran Railways, workers of Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Agro-Industry, Tehran subway, and Mashhad telecommunications had unpaid wages during this month.

Moreover, some of the workers in Iran Powder Metallurgy Complex, factories in Asaluyeh and Pars Saveh tire factory were fired or laid off this month. 500 workers of factories in Qazvin province were suspended and 800 workers were laid off in Asaluyeh as well. On the other hand, 52 workers died or were injured because of negligence in the oversight of safety conditions in their workplaces.

Three prominent labor activists, Behnam Ebrahimzadeh, Jafar Azimzadeh, and Parvin Mohammadi were detained. The request of temporary release on bail for Parvin Mohammadi was denied by the Branch 102 of Fardis’s Criminal Court. Esmail Bakhshi, the detained labor activist of Haft Tappeh, faced three new charges: “spreading lies”, “propaganda against the state”, and “insulting to authorities”. Esmail Bakhshi’s attorney, Farzaneh Zilabi was summoned to the Branch three of the Shush county’s Revolutionary and General prosecutor’s office. In the same month, officers of Shush prosecutor’s office physically attacked Bakhshi’s sister and handcuffed his mother. This happened when his family was following up on his lawsuit. Later the family of this labor activist were summoned to the court.

In February, the attorney of several workers of Arak HEPCO reported that the cases of seven workers of this company were transferred to the Revolutionary Court. In 2018, 15 workers were sentenced to prison and lashes after last year’s protests. The appellate session of Davood Razaei, a board member of the syndicate of workers of Tehran and suburbs bus company, was held in the Branch 36 of Tehran Appellate Court. He was sentenced to five years in prison by the Branch 26 of the Revolution Court. Eghbal Shabani, labor activist in Sanandaj was arrested and Zaniar Dabaghian, another labor activist from Sanandaj, was sentenced to one-year prison term. A journalist was arrested in Qazvin because of reporting workers’ news in this month.

 

Monthly Report of Workers in Iran in March 2019

Several workers and activists were arrests, summoned, sentenced, received lash sentences, and were fired during this month.  Because of the lack of work safety, many workers died or were injured. Also, it has been stated that tens of thousands of workers encountered financial hardship because of their unpaid wages.

47 workers died or were injured because of negligence in the oversight of safety conditions in their workplaces. The workers of Takestan Wire company, Ajand construction company, Chame Shir dam in Gachsaran, Travers technical buildings lines, Andimeshk municipality, Choghazanbil world heritage site, Kurdistan’s Zagros Steel Contractors, and Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Agro-Industry have unpaid wages in this month.

Ali Kashefi, chairman of Mashhad laundries union, reported that 50 businesses were closed, and their workers were unemployed; due to last year’s high inflation. Some of the waste collectors of Sadra municipality who already have three months of unpaid wages and were protesting for their unpaid wages were fired. At the middle of March, which is the Persian new year, chairman of the pioneers of labor union of workers society announced that at least 97300 workers had unpaid wages prior to the New Year’s Eve.

Jafar Azimzadeh, chairman of the Free Workers Union was sentences to 30 lashes. Parvin Mohammadi, vice president of this union was released on bail. Meanwhile, Esmail Bakhshi was transferred from Shush prison to Sheiban prison in Ahvaz.

Moreover, several citizens were arrested protesting against firing waste collectors of Sadra municipality. Rahim Khodabakhshi, general secretary of Shiraz University’s Arman union, Ehsan Ziaraty, head of Shiraz University’s Basij Student Organization, and Hamid Mohammadpour, former secretary of Arman union were among the detainees. Ebrahim Abbasmanjazi, one of the workers of Haft Tappeh was summoned to Shush’s prosecutor’s interrogating office by a notice. After interrogation and charging accusations, he was temporarily released.

The Banch 36 of Tehran’s Appeals Court sentenced Davood Razavi, member of Tehran ‌Bus Company’s workers’ labor union board, to five years in prison. According to the verdict, this decision is suspended for five years. Also, Maziar Seyyednejad, a labor activist who was arrested 3 months ago for workers’ protests in Khuzestan, was released from Sheiban prison of Ahvaz on bail until completion of the juristic process. He was treated terribly during his prison time.

Two other labor activists, Ghodratollah Jalalvand and Reza Amjadi, were arrested in this month by security officials and were moved to an unknown location. Reza Amjadi was released after a few days by bail until completion of the juristic process.

 

Monthly Report of Workers in Iran in April 2019

One of the most important news in this month was arresting and summon of labor activists and the security authorities’ pressure to prevent celebratory events for the international Labor Day. Tehran Bus Company’s workers’ union invited workers to protest by the Parliament building on May 1st. Some of the businesses were shut down and a lot of workers were laid off in this month, because of high inflation and rising costs of production.

105 workers died or were injured because of the lack of work safety. The worker of Oshnavieh municipality, Iran Powder Metallurgy factory, Ilam industrial slaughterhouse, Tehran Metro lines 1 and 4 services, Ahvaz Steel,Rasht and Sari municipalities, Cement production factory of Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad province, Iranian railway company, Dehdasht hospital, Iran telecommunication company, and teachers of the schools outside Iran had unpaid wages this month. Chief executive officer of Hamshahri institute, the official news agency of Tehran municipality, stated that 104 of this institute’s personnel were laid off. 50 workers of Mojan engineering company, construction contractor of the central sewage treatment plant in the Bandar Emam petrochemical plant and 35 other workers in Keyvan food industries in Hamadan province were laid off.

Executive secretary of Mazandaran province worker’s house announced Neka Choob company was out of business and its workers were laid off. Tehran Bus Company’s workers’ union invited the workers to attend a protest by the Parliament on May 1st, in commemoration of the international Labor Day.

Amir Amirgholi, Sanaz Allahyari and Amirhosein Mohammadifar, members of “Gam”, a labor right defendant magazine, were detained. Thus, detention was one of the most important news on workers in April. Amir Amirgholi and Esmail Bakhshi were transferred from Ahvaz prisons to Evin prison in Tehran and their investigation trial was held in the Evin prosecutor’s office. Three labor activists, Ghaleb Hoseini, Mozafar Salehnia and Ahmad Taghizadeh, in the cities of Sanandaj and Urmiah were summoned by these cities ‘security authorities before labor’s day. Twelve labor activists in Jahannama Park of Karaj were arrested as well. Four of them, Parvin Mohammadi, Valeh Zamani, Alireza Saghafi, and Haleh Safarzadeh, were detained.

 

Monthly Report of Workers in Iran in May 2019

‏ The most important news in this month was the arrest of more than 50 labor activists and citizens on the international labor’s day celebration in May, by the Parliament. Meanwhile, hundreds of workers were laid off because of businesses’ shut down. In this month, Reza Shahabi attended the General Conference of Labor in Dijon/France.

106 workers died or were injured because of negligence in the oversight of safety conditions in their workplaces. On the other hand, more than 50 workers of “Navard Ivan” steel company who were working for more than 10 years in this factory, were laid off because of this factory being out of business. Also, more than 100 workers of Mahshahr Pipe Mill and Kurdistan Alborz tire, and 140 workers of Mahshahr petrochemical plant were laid off in this month. Meanwhile, 263 laid off workers of Asaluyeh South Pars, who had unpaid wages and premiums, wrote a letter to the minister of oil and demanded their rights. They wrote in their letter, that they “collect bread waste” for living.

‏In this month, Reza Shahabi attended the 52nd  Congress of the General Confederation of Labor in Dijon/France as the representative of the Tehran Bus Company’s workers’ union. He reported that Farahnaz Shiri, the first female bus driver in Tehran Bus Company was fired because of her gender. He also spoke about the problems and limitations of workers in this company.

‏Unpaid wages of the teachers around the country, workers of Ghoo vegetable oil company of Tehran, Ilam slaughterhouse, RSTC of Arak, Tabriz, and Shazand, Mahabad and Tabas municipalities, sugar beet farmers of Naghdeh sugar production company, coal mine workers of Malach Aram mine, physicians of Yazd University of Medical Sciences, and Karj Imam Khomeini hospital workers, wee one of the other problems which workers were encountering this month.

‏More than 50 people were arrested during the international labor day’s ceremony which was held by the Parliament. Despite release of some of the detainees by bail, some others like Marzie Amiri, Keyvan Samimi, Hasan Saidi, Atefe Rangriz, Nasrin Javadi, Nahid Khodaju, Neda Naji and Farhad Sheykhi were in custody, being in prions for about a month.

Representatives of labor unions of many countries around the world attending the 52nd Congress of the General Confederation of Labor in Dijon/France and Amnesty International, released two separated statements and demanded setting detainees of international Labor Day free without any conditions. Cases of labor activists, Esmail Bakhshi, Sepideh Gholian, Amir Amirgholi, Sanaz Allahyari, Amirhossein Mohammadifar, Asal Mohammadi and Ali Nejati, were sent to the Tehran’s Revolution Court. Although a bond was set for the detainees, the head of Evin prosecutor’s office prevented their release on bail. In addition, two labor activists in Sanandaj, Tofigh Mohammadi and Eghbal Shabani, were sentenced to two years in prison. More than 10 workers of Haft Tappeh were arrested or summoned by security authorities. There exact number of these workers is not known. They were arrested or summoned because of protesting the Islamic Labor Council of Haft Tappeh. Eshagh Rouhi, a labor activist from Sanandaj who was arrested at the same time of international Labor Day, was unable to pay the set bail and was held in prison. The trial of labor activist, Maziar Seyyednejad, was held in this month by the Revolution Court of Ahvaz.

 

Four Kulbars were killed or injured by police shot

Posted on: May 31st, 2019

In the past two days, two Kulbars, 23 years old Sina Mam-Hamidi and 55 years old Naser Olian were injured in Marivan and Urmia and two others, Khaled Salimi and Akam Bardel were killed by patrol police in Piranshahr.

In 2018, 48 Kulbars were killed and 104 had been injured by police patrol in the west and north west of Iran. According to this report, 300 other citizens (beside Kulbars) in 11 provinces were injured or killed by military forces.

Kulbars (carriers) are labors who are carrying goods across borders for living. The majority of Kulbars are working in West Azerbaijan, Kermanshah and Kurdistan provinces. Kulbars are carrying goods across the borders from unofficial locations, in lieu of a very low amount of money.

CCTSI Rallies Teachers into Second Round of Strikes

Posted on: November 15th, 2018

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA)- The Coordinating Council of Teacher Syndicates in Iran (CCTSI) rallied educators across the country into a second round of general strikes November 13th, mobilizing in protest of the “Full-Time Teacher” bill, which continues to move forward despite significant pushback.

Strike activity was reported in several provinces, as teacher-activists and their allies staged sit-ins in the principal’s offices of their respective schools. “The goal of the sit-in,” a CCTSI statement read, “is to oblige our rulers to uphold the constitution by providing free, quality, and accessible education to students, and to stop their attack on the livelihood of teachers.”

CCTSI and their sympathizers voiced similar demands during a first round of strikes in October of this year.

Teachers made their demands known on handheld placards protesting low teacher salaries, environmental conditions unsuitable for learning, the Full-Time Teacher Bill, class discrimination in the education system, privatization, language discrimination, and the continued persecution of teacher-activists.

From Evin Prison, Vice President of the Centre for Human Rights Defenders Narges Mohammadi sent a message in support of the strikers:

“The children of this land learn “D E C E N C Y” from their teachers, and a teacher’s [decency] manifests in free expression and conscience.

The children of this land learn “P E A C E” and “F U L F I L L M E N T” from their teachers, and their teachers’ fulfillment lies in a humane, dignified life.

We support the teachers’ general strike of November 13 and 14, to free the fettered “T E A C H E R,” to elevate the teacher’s status, and preserve the right to peaceful protest.

Narges Mohammadi”

Iran Update: Reports of Persecuted Baha’is October 24 – November 11

Posted on: November 14th, 2018

Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) -Baha’i citizens of Iran have continued to face persecution this month, in the form of grave desecrations, business shutdowns, and interference by authorities in their places of employment. Meanwhile, one Baha’i prisoner has returned to prison after a furlough release.

Grave Desecration

Four days after her October 24th burial, the body of Shamsi Aghdasi Azamian, a Baha’i resident of Gilavand village near the city of Damavand, was found in the nearby rural outskirts of Jaban.

According to a close source, security forces called Azamian’s son that same day, informing him that her remains had been found and instructing him to rebury them in Tehran.

Security forces had previously forbidden Baha’i Gilavand residents from burying their dead locally, ordering instead that all deceased Baha’is be interred in the capital city, 50 miles west by mountain pass. Though Azamian’s son initially refused — citing Baha’i religious custom to lay believers to rest no more than one hour away from their place of death — the family ultimately complied under pressure from security forces.

Earlier this year, Iranian authorities issued a court order to lock down a Baha’i cemetery in the city of Kerman. Baha’is in Sanandaj, Ahvaz, Tabriz, and Sangesar have also been prevented from burying their loved ones in local cemeteries, and in the cases of Sangesar and Sanandaj, some Baha’i burial sites have been reported destroyed.

As of yet, no one has claimed responsibility for the desecration of Azamian’s grave.

Shutdown of Baha’i Businesses

Iranian Authorities have shut down the small businesses of five Baha’i Ahvaz residents and two Baha’i Abadan residents as of November 5th.

The businesses — which had been temporarily closed, in observance of Baha’i religious holidays — were court-ordered to remain sealed off to the public. Their owners were identified as Ahvaz residents Vargha Derakhsan, Behrouz Zohdi, Jahanbakhsh Afsharzadeh, Feizollah Ghanavatian, Sohrab Derakhsan, and brothers Arman Azadi and Aram Azadi of Abadan.

Having run their business for the past 38 years, the Azadi brothers had already experienced a forced shutdown on July 12, 2018. After a 14-day tug-of-war with security forces, the prosecutor’s office, and other municipal authorities, they managed to re-open their store on July 26th, only to be shut down again this month.

Despite trade union regulations protecting business owners from arbitrary closures, Baha’i citizens regularly face unexplained restrictions on their commercial activity. And while Iranian businesses are legally permitted to close up shop for a maximum of 15 days per year — for any reason — some have been forced to stay closed after briefly pausing their operations for Baha’i holidays.

On December 3, 2017, Rouhani aide Shahindokht Molaverdi said that Iranian authorities were looking into a legislative solution to this issue.

HRANA reported on the forced closure of 11 Baha’i-owned business in Ahvaz in July of this year, and previously published a story on the same trend in Abadan.

Baha’i Prisoner Back in Rajai Shahr After Furlough

Afshin Seyed Ahmad, a Baha’i political prisoner serving a three-year sentence for “acting against national security” and “propaganda against the regime,” returned to prison on November 11th after eight days of furlough.

This was Ahmad’s first furlough release since beginning his sentence June 28, 2016, in Evin Prison. He has since been transferred to Rajai Shahr.

Ahmad previously spent 20 days in solitary confinement after a November 2012 arrest.

Educational Institution Shut Down

Two educational institutions in the city of Shiraz have been shut down by court order for employing recently-arrested Baha’i citizens Nora Pourmoradian and Elaheh Samizadeh.

HRANA reported on Pourmoradian and Samizadeh’s release on October 10th after spending more than three weeks in custody. The two were working in the field of music education for children.

A close source backed speculation that the institution’s shutdown was prompted by Pourmoradian and Samizadeh’s employment there.

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Baha’i citizens of Iran are systematically deprived of religious freedoms, while according to Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, all people are entitled to freedom of religion, belief, and changes thereof, as well as the right to express and practice those beliefs as individuals or collectives, in public or in private.

Though unofficial sources estimate the Baha’i population of Iran at more than 300,000, Iran’s Constitution officially recognizes only Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism, and does not acknowledge the Baha’i faith as an official religion. As a result, the rights of Baha’is in Iran are systematically violated.