Two Workers Killed Due to Unsafe Workplace Conditions in Zanjan and Mahabad

On Saturday, November 27 and Sunday, November 28th,  two workers lost their lives in workplace accidents in Mahabad and Zanjan cities, respectively.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Rokna news, on Sunday, November 28,  a worker was killed in an explosion at a welding workshop in Zanjan City. Jafari Roohi, head of Zanjan’s Emergency Medical Center, commented on the incident.

“Two ambulances were dispatched to the spot. The injured man, 30 years old, had been killed right after the explosion,” Roohi said. He added that the victim died due to the explosion of a gas tank in a welding workshop.

In Mahabad, according to ILNA, a construction worker fell from the third floor of an under-construction building and lost his life.

“Today, a-31 year-old worker who was concreting a column construction fell from the third floor and died immediately,” the Mahabad Chief of Police commented.

Iran ranks 102nd in workplace safety among 189 countries.

 

HRANA Recap: This Week’s Protests in Iran

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, a number of protests took place this week in Iran, many of which were continuations of ongoing movements.  Read our recap below for details, photos, and videos from the demonstrations.

Saturday, November 6

Several workers working on the Shafa Rud dam assembled at their workplace to protest against job uncertainty and a months-long delay in payment. As one of these workers stated, they have not received wages in six months.  About 900 workers who are working on this dam have been suspended from work due to the company’s financial problems.

A group of personnel of the Islamic Azad University in Mahshahr City protested their wages
by spreading empty tablecloths as a sign of their hard livelihood conditions. One
stated that they have long been denied payment under the pretext of a funding shortage.

A group of retirees of Haft-Tappeh Complex protested in front of the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare Office in Shush city. They stated that their pension income has not been fully paid in accordance with Social Security Act.

A number of farmers in Bavi County assembled in front of the building of the company Karun-e-Bozorg, an operation and maintenance of Irrigation and Drainage Networks, to ask for their water portion for wheat cultivation. They also protested against the cut in the water supply for their gardens.

A group of workers of Kerman Coal Mining Company went on strike and assembled at their workplace to protest against assigning the stock management to the company Dalahu Tejarat. They will oppose any changes in stock management until they have taken formal employment with the company.

The workers of Iran-Khodro in Tabriz went on strike at work to demand delayed payments and benefits.

Sunday, November 7

A number of retirees and pensioners of the Khuzestan Social Security Organization protested in front of the building of the organization in Ahvaz city. They asked for levelling up pensions to stand above the poverty line, closing the disparity in pension incomes, enforcing article 96 of the Social Security Act, solving issues regarding supplementary insurance, paying end-of-year bonuses and factoring in employment history in hazardous jobs for calculating pension income.

A group of designers and supervising engineers assembled in front of the Iran Ministry of Roads & Urban Development to protest the enactment of new regulations and procedures which, as the protestors claim, would be devastating for companies in this sector.

Retirees and pensioners of Fulad Steel Company assembled in front of the company’s pension fund departments in Isfahan and Ahvaz. They asked that their pensions be raised above the poverty line, closing the disparity in pension incomes and addressing supplementary insurance issues.

A group of personnel of the Social Security Organization assembled in front of the parliament in Tehran. They demanded implementation of the Hard and Hazardous Jobs Act, which requires that military service periods and job hardship records be taken into account when raising wages.

A number of victims of the financial fraud of the cryptocurrency exchange “Cryptoland” assembled in front of the Judiciary Building and demanded their lost money.

A number of depositors who has lost their investment through Caspian institution assembled and protested in front of the building of the Central Bank in Tehran.

Monday, November 8

A number of retirees of Haft-Tappeh Company who went into a pension in 2020 assembled in front of the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labor and Social welfare office in Shush city. They claimed that their pension income has been accounted for less than what the social security act requires.

In Tehran, a group of citizens who had pre-ordered cars from Ramak Khodro Company assembled in front of the Tehran Courthouse to ask for a demand accountability from the company, which has failed to deliver their cars after four years.

Dozens of citizens from Lorestan County in Fars province traveled to Tehran and assembled in front of the building of the Iran Ministry of Roads & Urban Development. They asked for maintenance of the unsafe and poor conditions of the road connecting Jahrom to Bandar-e Abbas. This road is still not two-lane, which has caused many fatal car accidents in recent weeks.

In Isfahan, a group of farmers assembled in front of the headquarter of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting. Moreover, several other farmers marched in the streets of this city. They protested against not receiving their water portion for the fall wheat crop planting.

In Tabriz, the workers of SEMET Company assembled in protest in front of the company manager’s office.

In Kerman, a number of workers of Kerman coal company assembled in front of the office of the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labour, and Social Welfare to protest against the privatization of the company.

Tuesday, November 9

Dozens of retired teachers and educators who have been on pension since 2020 assembled in front of the building of the Planning and Budget Organization in Tehran. They demanded payment of their pension bonuses. The protest turned violent by police interference.

A group of livestock farmers in the Toroq area in Mashhad assembled to protest against the demolition of several animal farms.

For the second consecutive day, in Isfahan, farmers assembled in front of the building of the Regional Water Company and marched in the streets.

Wednesday, November 10

For the third consecutive day, in Isfahan, a number of farmers assembled in the dried up stretches of the river Zayandeh-rud to ask for their water portion. In response, the member parliament Abas Moghtadai promised that to address their issue, along with other Isfahan members of parliament, he would have a meeting with the president.

A number of landowners in Astalak Pardis protested in front of the building of the Tehran Ministry of Roads & Urban Development. They claimed that their lands have been confiscated by the company Omran-Pardis.

In Khorasan province, a group of Iran-Khodro workers went on a strike to protest against forced overwork and ask for raising wages.

For the second consecutive day, to ask for addressing their work issues, a group of preschool educators assembled and spent the night in front of the building governorate building.

Thursday, November 11

In response to the call of the Coordinating Council of Iranian teacher Unions, both retired and working teachers in 67 cities across the country assembled and protested. As their most important demand, they asked for the implementation of the Ranking Income Bill, whereby the salaries of teachers should be raised to at least 80% of university board members’ salaries.

On the same day of nationwide teachers’ protest, in Isfahan, the school concierges and service workers assembled in the front of the building of the Department of Education to ask for their demands.

For the third consecutive day, in Isfahan, the farmers assembled in the dried up stretches of the river Zayandeh-rud.

Omar Sharifi Bukani Arrested in Tehran and Transferred to Unknown Location

On Thursday, November 11, security forces arrested Tehran resident Omar Sharifi Bukani and then transferred him to an unidentified location.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, security forces arrested 70-year-old Sharifi Bukani without a warrant at his home in Tehran.

Mr. Sharifi Bukani was reportedly arrested once previously, in 1992, on a charge of “membership in one of the opposition political parties” and then sentenced to seven years in prison by the Revolutionary Court of Mahabad City. He was released in 1998 after serving out his sentence in Urmia Prison.

The reasons for yesterday’s arrest, along with Mr. Sharifi Bukani’s current whereabouts, are unknown as of this writing.

HRANA Recap: This Week’s Protests in Iran

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, a number of protests took place this week in Iran, many of which were continuations of ongoing movements.  Read our recap below for details, photos, and videos from the demonstrations.

 

Saturday, October 30

The workers of Abadan Petrochemical Company assembled at the company premises to demand the right to form an Islamic Workers’ Council, as the labor code allows, the adjustment of their contracts according to their job classification plans, job security, preservation of the dignity of workers and an end to punitive measures towards employees who advocate for their rights.

A number of workers of the Golnar Vegetable Oil Factory protested at the company premises.  As well as fostering a number of other internal problems, the factory employer reportedly has been announcing temporary business closure each month, and sending about 300 workers on compulsory leave.

Dozens of teachers and educators from various cities came to Tehran on Saturday and and assembled in front of Parliament. They asked for implementation of the Ranking Income Bill, whereby the salaries of teachers must be raised to at least 80% of university board members’ salaries. They also demanded the fortification of pension funds, in adherence with Civil Service Management Law.

 

In Bandar Mahshahr, the workers of Razi Petrochemical Company went on strike for several consecutive days. They assembled in front of the company headquarters and demanded bonuses and benefits, improvement in the quality of meals, implementation of the Jobs Classification Plan, and supplementary health insurance.

The concierges and service workers of schools assembled in front of Parliament in Tehran and protested poor living conditions and low wages.

A number of residents of the village Shahr-e Kohneh in Neyshabur County protested infrastructural negligence, particularly in regard to road maintenence. Residents currently have to travel a long distance to reach an unsafe underpass in order to cross the railway.



A number of residents of Mahabad City in Isfahan assembled in the dried up stretches of the river Taherabad and protested water withdrawal from this river for the usage of the Fulad Natanz factory. Moreover, reportedly, as a result of this water withdrawal a 3000-year-old Qanat has been dried up.

 

In Tehran, A number of lawyers of the judiciary assembled in front of the building of the Iran Bar Association to show their opposition to enactment of a plan whereby the issuance of some business licenses will be facilitated.

A group of specialized hospital assistants of Imam Hossein Hospital went on a strike at their workplace in protest against their poor living conditions.

About 40 workers of Kayson Company stopped working and went on a strike to ask for their demands, including the payment of wages that have been delayed by three months.

Sunday, October 31

A number of retirees and pensioners of the Iran Social Security Organization assembled in front of their local units in various cities such as Tehran, Mashhad, Ahvaz, Kermanshah, Rasht and Tabriz. They asked for a pension above the poverty line, implementation of article 96 of the Social Security Acts, closing the disparity in pension incomes, end-year bonuses and factoring in employment history in hazardous jobs when calculating pension income.

 

Service workers of Tehran Metro on Line 2 assembled to protest the three-month delay in their wages. Moreover, they have not received end of year bonuses for two years and the employer’s insurance contribution has also been delayed.

 

For a second consecutive day,  workers of the vegetable oil factory Golnar assembled at the factory premises to demand action.

“After two days of protests, no one from the company responds to us,” one of these workers stated. “Since the privatization of the factory, in recent years, there have raised many conflicts between the company and the workers including compulsory unpaid leaves, the deduction of leave from the salary, reducing in production, imposing one-month contracts and continuous two-week night work, and the most important, threatening workers to be fired.”

For the second consecutive day, a group of workers of Abadan Petrochemical Company (TAPPICO) assembled at the company premises to ask for the implementation of the Job Classification plan. They also protested against the layoffs of four fellow workers.

 

In Qazvin, the garden maintenance workers of Rojan Dasht Caspian went on strike to demand their wages, which have been delayed by 4 months.

 

Workers of Arak Machine Manufacturing Factory assembled and protested at the company premises. They demanded increased wages in accordance with inflation and real living costs.

 

A group of the retirees of Telecommunication Company of Iran assembled at premises of the building of the finance department of the company to ask for their demands.

A number of farmers from Shush and Shushtar assembled in front of their government buildings to protest rice exports outside the province.

Monday, November 1

Judiciary personnell assembled in front of the Justice building of various cities across the country including Tehran, Mashhad, Shush, Yazd, Zanjan, Farahan, Ray Shahr, Kuhrang, Neyshabur, Meybod, Gorgan, Azadshahr, Sanandaj, Ahvaz, Elam, Arak, Divandareh, Paveh, Damavand, Kasmar, Tafresh, Boroujen. They protested against poor living conditions and inattention to their demands.

A number of the workers in the lead and zinc mine in Gojar in Kerman Province assembled in front of the building of the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labour and Social welfare in Kerman to demand increased wages.

A number of workers of Kut-e Abdollah Municipality assembled in front of the building of the Islamic Council in this city. They protested unpaid wages and unpaid employers’ contributions to health insurance.

A group of citizens in Tehran assembled in front of the building of the Securities and Exchange Organization to protest capital market collapse and demanded that measures be taken to protect people’s investments.

Workers of the Razi petrochemical company went on a strike at their workplace in Bandar Mahshah. They asked for benefits and bonuses in accordance with workplace conditions, improvment in the quality of meals, implementation of the Job classification plan, and supplementary insurance.

Tuesday, November 2

A group of personnel and board members of Islamic Azad University of Shushtar City assembled on campus to protest unpaid wages.

 

The residents of the town “Poshte Bagh-e Parandgan” in Astara County assembled in front of the building of the Ministry of Roads and Urban Development office to protest against the decision to demolish a number of local residential complexes.

Personnel of the Regional Telecommunication Company of Eastern Azerbaijan Province assembled inside the company headquarters and in front of the management office.

A number of people who have not received their pre-ordered cars from Azvico Company (Azerbaijan Vehicle Industry) assembled in front of the office of the Head of the Judiciary .

 

 

Residents of the village Malek-Abad in Arak County protested the unlawful confiscation of their pieces of land by semi-government Awqaf and Charity Affairs Organizations. A few days prior, they had blocked the road from Arak to Qom City as a demonstration of protest.

 

A group of transport service drivers of the hospital Shahid Mohammadi went on a strike to protest poor living conditions and low wages.

 

Workers of Arak Machine Manufacturing Factory assembled at the company premises and went on strike.

Wednesday, November 3

Victims of the financial fraud of the cryptocurrency exchange “Cryptoland” assembled in front of the Tehran Courthouse this Wednesday and demanded that their complaints be addressed and their money returned.

A number of workers of Kut-e Abdollah Municipality assembled in front of the building of the Islamic Council in this city. Reportedly, 400 workers have not been fully paid since July.

A number of people with hearing impairment in Mariwan assembled in front of the State Welfare Organization building to protest poor living conditions and unemployment. They asked for enforcing the Comprehensive Law on Protection of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

 

A group of shareholders who lost money due to fraudulent transactions in the Tehran stock exchange assembled in front of the Tehran Courthouse in protest.

 

Three Workers Killed and One Injured Due to Unsafe Workplace Conditions

A total of three workers have been killed and one injured in recent accidents that were brought about by unsafe workplace conditions.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Rokna, on November 2, in three workplace accidents in Qorveh, Mahabad and Hafshejan cities, three workers lost their lives and one more was injured.

Ali Naseri, the head of the fire department in Qorveh announced the death of a worker due to the fire that broke out in a bakery.

“In a bakery in a district in the center city of Qorveh, a gas leak from a gas pipe, which had been branched off illegally to be used for bread baking machine, caused a fire in this bakery,”  Naseri commented. “After the neighbors reported the fire, the fire department dispatched the firefighting team to the spot. The firefighters saved two workers from the fire. One of them had severe burns, who was transferred to the hospital.”

The head of the pre-hospital emergency care unit of Qorveh Shahrokh Mohammadi revealed that the 55-year-old baker died in a hospital in Sanandaj city due to severe burns in several parts of his body.

It is worth noting that many bakeries in both urban and rural areas use off-brand gas lines which are not up to code, and this can lead to gas leaks and fires.

In another workplace accident in Mahabad, a worker was poisoned by carbon monoxide gas.

“Following an emergency call, the Emergency Center of Police 110 sent a team to the spot,” the police commander of Mahabad stated. “Preliminary examination of the emergency team revealed the victim, a 50-year-old man, has died of poisoning due to inhaling carbon monoxide gas while he was asleep.”

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting ISNA, two months after a work accident, in a sugar factory in Hafshjan city in Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province, one worker died from severe injuries. Reportedly, the victim died from a neck fracture after eight heavy sugar bags fell on top of on him.

“The height of the sugar bag piles should not be more than 1.8 meters,” HSE manager of Hafshjan sugar factory Arash Heyday said. “The government has to take action to unload these warehouses. However, because of the delay in unloading and lack of room, we have to make higher stacks which endanger the workers.”

Iran ranks 102 in workplace safety out of 189 countries.

 

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Sunni Prisoner Zaher Roozkhun Released on Bail

On Thursday, October 14, Sunni prisoner Zaher Roozkhun was released temporarily on bail until the end of criminal proceedings.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, Mahabad resident Zaher Roozkhun was released on bail for 350 million tomans (approx. 13,000 US dollars). He has been denied access to lawyer and family visitation during the detention.

Roozkhun had been previously arrested by security forces before too on August 29, 2021. After completing the interrogation process, he was sent from a detention center in Urmia to Mahabad Prison.

As of writing this, the reason for his arrest and the charges is unknown.

 

Three Citizens Detained by Security Forces in Mahabad and Taken to Unknown Location

Three citizens from the village of Kuseh Kahriz ​in Mahabad County were recently arrested by security forces.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, after their arrest the citizens were taken to an unknown location.

According to this report, Hossein Dudkanlu Milan and Zaher Rozkhoon were arrested on August 29, and Mr. Shaho Ahmadi was arrested a week after them.

Despite the follow-up of the families of these citizens, the reasons for their detention, the charges against them, and their whereabouts  are not known.

Saeed Fathi Nejad Sentenced to Three Years and 7 Months in Prison

The Revolutionary Court of Mahabad sentenced Saeed Fathi Nejad, a citizen currently detained in Mahabad Prison, to three years and seven months in prison.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, Mr. Fathi Nejad received this sentence on a charge of “membership in an opposition group”.

He was arrested by security forces in mid-June without a court order and was transferred to Mahabad Prison after being interrogated.

28-year-old Saeed Fathi Nejad has been denied access to a lawyer and family visits during his detention.

COVID-19 Spreads in Mahabad Prison in West Azerbaijan Province

Observations of symptoms of the coronavirus among inmates has raised concerns about the virus’s spread within the public ward of Mahabad Prison

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Mukrian News Agency, several inmates have been denied medical treatment despite having deteriorating health and symptoms of the coronavirus.

Meanwhile, prison officials have refused to provide even symptomatic inmates with COVID tests, and several prisoners in the public ward of the prison have severe symptoms.

“Several prisoners suffer from Corona and are in critical condition,” the report quoted a prisoner as saying.

 

Mohammad Taher Soleimani Executed in Mahabad Prison

Yesterday, June 30, Mohammad Taher Soleimani was executed in Mahabad Prison in Kurdistan Province.

According to HRANA, the news agency of Human Rights Activists, quoting Kurdpa, Soleimani had previously been sentenced to death on drug-related charges.

Mohammad Taher Soleimani was 65 years old and from Dizaj village in Margavar Rural District of Urmia County in West Azerbaijan Province.

Mr. Soleimani was transferred to solitary confinement on June 29, and his family was summoned to Mahabad Prison for their final visit.

Iran ranks first in the world in citizen executions per-capita, according to international organizations. The Statistics and Publication Center of the Human Rights Activists in Iran (HRA) reported that between January 1st and  December 20th of 2020, at least 236 citizens were executed.

One of these citizens was executed publicly, and two were juvenile offenders. An additional 95 citizens were sentenced to death.

According to the report, more than 72% of executions in Iran are not reported by the government or the judiciary. Human rights organizations call these “secret executions.”

Soleimani’s execution has not been announced by Iranian media or official sources as of this writing.