Ahvaz became the vanguard of popular protests

In Ahvaz, the most recent strikes held by the workers, have swept one of the mostsignificant economic and industrial poles of Iran, the Khuzestan Province.

In Iran, there is not a day that goes by without witnessing several protests. People from different strata and classes such as teachers, the elderly pensioners, the truck drivers and etc. participate in these protests. Indeed, most of the Iranian people are not seeking improvement in their economic conditions, but are struggling to receive their wage arrears; in some cases, for a couple of years. The state-run Iran Labor News Agency (ILNA) reported that a group of Ahvaz metro workers protested on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2018, for 18 months of unpaid wages. Also, the people whose deposits have been plundered by the financial institutions affiliated to the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC)are protesting for two years, to retrieve their money.

The workers are looking for the restoration of Iran’s industries as the national wealth. These industries have been dragged to the verge of bankruptcy because of mismanagement. Under the nepotistic mullahs’ rule, and under the pretext of assigning these industries to the private sectors, they have been sold out to the mullahs’ relatives.   

While the f the workers and government employees are overdue, making them unable to make their ends meet, there has not been even once that the astronomical salaries and benefits of the ministers, MPs, and other government executives have not been paid. All these happen in a country where the state-run media admit that the wages of thousands of Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Mill workers have not been paid for 105 days (ILNA News Agency, Oct. 31, 2018) or, the price of the MPs’ cars in the parliament’s parking lot exceeds one year of the oil revenue. (Syasat-e-Rooznewspaper, Dec. 1, 2018).

Workers of the Iran National Steel Industry Group (INSIG) in the city of Ahvaz, capital of oil-rich Khuzestan province have staged a new round of strikes and held powerfulprotests since Nov. 10, 2018, almost simultaneously with their peers, HaftTappeh Sugar Cane Mill workers, at Shush city, in the same province.

The steelworkers demand their overdue wages and the return of the INSIG to public ownership. Both the INSIG and Haft Tappeh Sugar Cane Mill were so-called privatized in deceitful circumstances. The private owners who are linked to the corrupted ruler paid very small amounts to buy the government-owned factories, then they stopped paying the workers’ wages on time. Due to the devastating policies of the mullahs’ regime, and the plundering of the assets of the steel factory by the Revolutionary Guards’ affiliated figures, production has fallen to 10%.

The steelworkers have continued their rallies despite authorities’ dispatch of a large number of security forces and anti-riot units throughout the city to scare them. Times and again the security forces encircled the protesters, but the steelworkers were able to break the security forces’ lines and gather outside the Khuzestan provincial governor’s office and take into the city streets, making their way towards downtown Ahvaz. A group of youths and women joined their ranks during the march, giving further strength to this demonstration.

Studentsof Tehran’s Art University rallied on Wednesday, Nov. 28, expressing theirsolidarity with the protesting workers of Haft Tapeh in Shush and steelworkersin Ahvaz.

The students were chanting: “We’re the workers’ children, we stand by their side”

The students of solidarity among different protesting strata has caused much fear for Iranian regime officials.

The protesting workers can be seen in the different videos chanting: “Hail to the workers, down with dictator,” “Workers will die but will not bow down.”

Videos also show protestors chanting, “Leave Syria, think about us”. They also chanted against Hassan Rouhani for his hollow promises and expressed theirhatred towards the state TV for not broadcasting the depth of the plights of the workers.

Reports indicated that the workers emphasized: ” We don’t leave until we get our rights”, “No nation has seen this much injustice”, “With one less embezzlement, our problems will be solved.”

The workers stressed on the regime’s taking advantage of the religious sentiments, chanting: “They chant for Imam Hossein, but pride themselves in theft.”

The workers of Ahvaz have heard nothing save empty promises, so they will carry on their protests until they meet their demands.

Mrs.Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of the Resistance of Iran (NCRI), commended the striking workers of Khuzestan and called the international human rights advocates and workers’ syndicates to lend support to the striking workers In Iran and take action to have the imprisoned workers released

  1. abbas khammar says

    The workers of Ahvaz have heard nothing save empty promises, so they will carry on their protests until they meet their demands.Peace be upon the heroic and brave people of Ahvaz

  2. saman hossaini says

    Congratulations to all the Ahwazi protesters and strikers

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