Protests Continue in Golpayegan and Several other Cities

On Tuesday, May 17, 2022, protests against soaring food prices continued in several cities, including Golpayegan in Isfahan Province. Many cities witnessed heavy police and security forces’ presence and internet disruptions.

Video footages obtained by HRANA News Agency show that in Golpayegan, people were rallying in the streets and chanting slogans against the regime. Reportedly, in Junaqan City, in Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province, the government has almost completely shut down the internet.

Following a new wave of price hikes recently in Iran, protests erupted in several cities across the country. In most cases, protests turned violent by the police and security forces who used tear gas, warning shots, and pellet guns to scatter the crowds.

 

Three Inmates Executed in Amol Prison

On Wednesday, May 18, 2022, three inmates who were convicted of drug-related crimes were executed in Amol Prison.

HRANA News Agency had previously reported that these inmates had been sent to solitary confinement as a routine procedure for imminent execution. The inmates have been identified as Farshad Nemat-Zadeh, Mehdi Shirjian and Eshaghi. 

These executions have not been reported by official sources and media outlets inside Iran so far.

The most recent report from the Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) states that between January 1 of 2021 and December 20 of 2021, at least 299 citizens, including four juvenile offenders, were executed. In addition, 85 citizens were sentenced to death in this period.

As the report points out, Iran’s judicial authorities do not publicly announce over 88% of executions. These unreported executions are known as “secret executions” by human rights organizations.

Twelve BRT Drivers Arrested

According to the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, twelve Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) drivers have been arrested on Tuesday, May 17, 2022. Since Monday, BRT drivers and other service workers have been on strike demanding a wage increase in accordance with the enactment of the Supreme Labor Council.

The identity of one of the individuals has been revealed as Mohammad Ramezani.

The syndicate also reported that Vahid Freidooni, one of his members, has been arrested along with the eleven BRT drivers.

Inmate Executed in Khorramabad Prison, Looming Execution of Three Inmates in Amol Prison

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, an inmate who was convicted of murder was executed in Khorramabad Prison on Saturday, May 7, 2022.

The inmate has been identified by HRANA as Qobad Khoakarami, a retired teacher. He had previously been sentenced to death by judicial authorities.

Khoakarami’s execution has not been reported by official sources and media outlets inside Iran so far.

Additionally, in recent days, in Amol Prison, three inmates who were on death row were transferred to solitary confinement as a routine procedure for imminent execution. These inmates have been identified as Farshad Nemat-Zadeh, Mehdi Shirjian and Eshaghi. All three have been convicted of drug-related crimes.

The most recent report from the Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) states that between January 1 of 2021 and December 20 of 2021, at least 299 citizens, including four juvenile offenders, were executed. In addition, 85 citizens were sentenced to death in this period.

As the report points out, Iran’s judicial authorities do not publicly announce over 88% of executions. These unreported executions are known as “secret executions” by human rights organizations.

Journalist Hossein Roointan Sentenced to Ten Years Imprisonment 

The Court of Appeals of Bushehr changed the initial sentence against Hossein Roointan from 20 to 10 years imprisonment. Initially, he had been sentenced to 20 years in prison by the Revolutionary Court of Dashtestan. Based on Article 134 of the Islamic Penal Code, the five years prison sentence is the maximum punishment enforceable for him.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, journalist and political activist Hossein Roointan was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment.

According to this verdict, Mr. Roointan has been sentenced to one year on the charge of “propaganda against the regime”, five years for “blasphemy against the imams and the prophet’s family”, two years for “offensive statements against the former and current Supreme Leader of Iran” and two years for “spreading lies and disturbing public opinion”.  From the above counts, the punishment of five years for blasphemy will be enforceable for him.

In the trial, running online campaigns and calling for illegal gatherings were presented as evidence for the charges.

On October 17, 2017, the Ministry of Intelligence agents arrested Mr. Roointan in Dashtestan. After one month, he was released on the bail amount of 200 million tomans.

Hossein Roointan, age 58, a resident of Dashtestan, had previously faced arrests and convictions due to his civil activities.

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Researcher and Sociologist Saeed Madani Arrested

Writer, sociologist and former political prisoner Saeed Madani was arrested and imprisoned.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Mehr News Agency, sociologist and former political prisoner Saeed Madani was arrested allegedly for “suspicious communications with outside of Iran and threat to national security”.

As a writer and sociologist, Saeed Madani has published research papers about social issues such as poverty and inequality, child abuse, violence against women, prostitution, and social welfare to name a few.

Mr Madani has faced several arrests and convictions and other social restrictions for his civil and educational activities. In the latest case, on December 28, 2021, while Madani was leaving Iran for a one-year fellowship at Yale University, he was stopped at the airport and his passport was confiscated.  Two days earlier, after four hours of interrogation by the intelligence officials, he had been told that he is not banned from leaving the country.

Six Individuals Arrested and Accused of Association with Anti-Revolutionary Groups

The Ministry of Intelligence of Iran announced the arrest of six individuals for alleged “association with anti-revolutionary groups” in Yasuj City of Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad Province. According to this statement, the individuals arrested have participated in teachers’ protests.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, in Yasuj, six individuals have been arrested for association with anti-revolutionary groups.

Without disclosing their names, the Ministry of Intelligence claimed: “Led by an anti-regime group based outside of Iran, these individuals aimed at using teachers’ protests to lead chaos, unrest and insecurity.”

Five Inmates Executed in Adel-Abad and Dastgerd Prisons

On Thursday, May 12, 2022, an inmate who was convicted of murder was executed in Dastgerd Prison in Isfahan. On another occasion, the execution of four inmates convicted of drug-related crimes in Adel-Abad Prison in Shiraz on Sunday, May 14. 

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Iran Human Rights Organization, on Thursday, May 12, 2022, the execution of an inmate identified as Hossein Fartash was carried out in Dastgerd Prison in Isfahan.

According to an informed source: “Hossein Fartash was a 40-year-old welder who was arrested for killing someone over honor issues and later sentenced to death.”

Moreover, on Sunday, May 14, four inmates identified as Ali Pajmordeh, held in the youth ward, Abbas Pajmordeh, Mohammad Gholamhoseini and Ali Hosien-Panah were executed in Adel-Abad Prison.

According to an informed source, Abbas Pajmordeh, Ali Pajmordeh’s uncle, was arrested for smuggling drugs and carrying illegal guns and was jailed for five years.

These executions have not been reported by official sources and media outlets inside Iran so far.

The most recent report from the Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) states that between January 1 of 2021 and December 20 of 2021, at least 299 citizens, including four juvenile offenders, were executed. In addition, 85 citizens were sentenced to death in this period.

As the report points out, Iran’s judicial authorities do not publicly announce over 88% of executions. These unreported executions are known as “secret executions” by human rights organizations.

Protests Spread to at least 20 Cities in Iran 

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, in recent days, triggered by soaring food prices, protests sparked in at least 20 cities in Iran. Protests took place in Dezful, Shahrekord, Andimeshk, Izeh, Junaqan, Khorramabad, Fashafouyeh, Farsan, Borujerd, Dehdasht, Dorud, Ardabil, Neyshabur, Suq, Rasht, Ahvaz, Yazd, Shadegan, Susangerd, and Yasuj. On Sunday, May 15, 2022, despite the tightening of security measures, the protest continued in several cities.

From the outset, the regime disrupted internet services in several cities in an attempt to prevent the protests.

On Friday, May 6, 2022, following the call on social media for rallying against soaring bread prices, in some cities in Khuzestan Province, the Iranian regime tightened security measures on the streets and disrupted internet and phone services to disrupt protests. Nonetheless, the day after, protests broke out in various cities of Khuzestan Province and beyond. Since then, the protests have continued in more than 20 cities. In most cases, protests turned violent by the police and security forces who used tear gas, warning shots, and pellet guns to scatter the crowds.

During the unrest, dozens of people were arrested. HRANA has obtained the identity of 20 of the individuals who were arrested in Ahvaz, 13 in Susangerd, 7 in Suq, and five in Shawr.

The regime forces have killed at least two protestors during the unrest, of which, one death has been confirmed by the city of Shahrekord’s representative in Iran’s Majles (parliament).

At Least Dozens of Teachers Arrested During Nationwide Protests

On Thursday, May 13, 2022, during the teachers’ protests in various cities across the country, several dozens of protestors were arrested. In Yasuj City, security forces arrested more than 20 protestors.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, on Thursday, May 13, 2022, more than 20 teachers were arrested during the protests in Yasuj.

In the protest, some of the individuals who were arrested were identified as Yaghoub Zare, Rahim Zare, Hajir Hojjati, Khadigeh Mobaraki, Behnam Asef-Jah, Kourush Jalil, Saeed Taheri, Soraya Aghai, Sasan Zarghampour. Moreover, Masoumeh Dehghan, Masoud Farhikhteh, Jaleh Roohzad and Lotfollah Jamshid in Tehran, Masoud Nikkhakh in Mariwan, and Siamak Chehrazi in Ahvaz were arrested.

On Thursday, in response to the call of the Coordinating Council of the Iranian Teachers’ Union, both retired and working teachers in dozens of cities held protests in front of the Ministry of Education in several cities and across from Iran’s Parliament in Tehran. The protestors chanted slogans in support of the detained teachers.

According to reports obtained by HRANA, many individuals other than teachers had also joined the protests. The government has tightened security measures around the country’s main streets to prevent such protests.