Iran saw many protests by workers on Monday, July 26, 2021, all across the country, which quickly became political in nature and any of these might be the spark that sets off the fire of the next uprising.
With that in mind, let’s look at the protests, what happened at them, and what the demonstrators were demanding.
The Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company workers continued their strike in Shush, Khuzestan, for the 14th consecutive day on Monday.
Their main demands for returning to work are:
Immediate payment of delayed wages
Extension of their insurance booklets
Rehiring of their colleagues who were fired recently
The firing of all company officials who have been involved in corruption
Return to the workers all money embezzled from the company
Free coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccinations rolled out quickly across the country
Also that day, nurses and other staff from the Khomeini Hospital in Karaj held a protest over long-delayed wages, and their chants showed the political nature of their protests.
“If one embezzlement is reduced, our problems will be solved”
“We are fed up with the corruption”
At the same time, the pensioners of the state-run Broadcasting Organization protested in Tehran, asking for officials to answer the demands that they’ve been making for some time. Two of the banners seen at the protest include “How can we believe news coming from a media outlet that does not know the status of its employees?” and “90 per cent of Iran Broadcasting Organization’s retirees are below the poverty line. Pay attention to our situation.”
Meanwhile, water and sewage company workers in Izeh continued their strike over the officials’ refusal to pay long-overdue wages for the third day in a row.
Also on Monday, July 26, oil sector workers continued their mass strikes for the 38th day, which has been expanding to more workers and more companies, all the while affecting the most important sectors of the economy. Currently, several thousand workers from over 114 refineries and power plants are on strike across the cities of Arak, Assaluyeh, Ahwaz, Abadan, Isfahan, Jask, Mahshahr, Tehran, and more.
These protests are examples of bigger issues in Iran, from state control over the economy to the regime’s repression of all people. Simply, the regime has destroyed the economy in order to line their own pockets and plug their budget deficit to finance their terrorism and warmongering across the region. These problems will not be fixed unless the regime is overthrown.
Lulzim Basha, Chairman of the Democratic Party of Albania, addressed at the Free Iran World Summit 2021 on July 10, 2021.
Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, it is my honor to address this event on behalf of the Democratic Party of Albania, a member of the European People’s Party and of the International Democratic Union.
The Iranian people’s aspiration for freedom, democracy, and respect for fundamental human rights and liberties has had and will continue to have the full solidarity and support of the Democratic Party of Albania and myself.
The recurring acts of unprovoked aggression and violence by the Iranian government, against its own people, against its neighbors, and against the global community of nations have heard countless lives of Iranian and other citizens in the region and around the world. From torture and murder, to the violent suppression of political manifestations, to harboring aiding and launching terrorist organizations, the Iranian regime has proven that it is willing to break the most essential norms of international order at the cost of innocent lives, and regional stability.
Today’s event, however, confirms that in the face of such malignant adversity, the international community’s resolve to counter these threats is not weakened, but only strengthened.
We support the Iranian people and their goal for a democratic and non-nuclear Iran. We support the Iranian people’s desire for change, and commend Madame Rajavi and her efforts to offer the people of Iran the perspective of a free, secular and democratic country.
In Albania, we know very well that the price of freedom extols a heavy toll on oppressed nations. But we also know that there is no other path towards a better future than the path of struggle for the fundamental rights of all human beings, for dignity, for freedom, for democracy, and equality before the law.
I would like to thank you, Madame Rajavi and all of you for your sacrifices and efforts for a better future for all the people of Iran. You can continue to count on our full support.
Pandeli Majko, Minister of State for Diaspora of Albania, Former Prime Minister, addressed at the Free Iran World Summit 2021 on July 10, 2021.
Dear friends, it is a pleasure for me to address this grand international conference and congratulate organizing such a gathering, the leadership of Maryam Rajavi and the political movement for Free Iran.
Albania has been in support of those who have been suppressed by the regime in Iran. We express our deep concerns about ongoing human rights violations in Iran.
The government of Albania a time ago expelled the Iranian ambassador in Tehran, as well as three deployments of the Iranian embassy, for their engagements against international law. I consider this very important, the resolution No. 180 on 25 April 2021 of the majority members of US Congress in support of the Iranian people’s desire for a democratic, secular and non-nuclear Republic of Iran.
This resolution raised positive and important steps when the Albanian government expelled Iranian diplomats. It is shameful for the officials of Tehran that in February 2021, Belgium court sentenced Iran’s deployment in Vienna with a maximum sentence for his role in planning to plant a bomb in the middle of Europe.
There are clear proof that the electoral system in Iran is degrading for its own reasons. This system is not producing political leaders now, the Iranian people boycotted the last presidential election.
Raisi, accused of crimes against humanity by international human rights organizations, is elected now as president. I am happy that today I stand by the people who want to be part of the future of Iran. With Maryam Rajavi, there is hope that Iran will take the place that the world deserves in the world.
Maryam Rajavi, the president of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), gave a speech to the 2021 Free Iran World Summit earlier this month, during the third day of the conference (July 12), which was focused on seeking justice for the 1988 massacre victims.
The massacre resulted in the deaths of 30,000 political prisoners in just a few months, following an order by Supreme Leader Ruhollah Khomeini to slaughter all those in prison who refused to abandon their support for the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (MEK). The prisoners, from all across the country, were sentenced to hanging by the death commission after a minute-long trial with no lawyers or witnesses.
For 30 years, the regime has escaped accountability and the mullahs directly involved have been promoted for their vile crimes, including Iran’s new president Ebrahim Raisi. Rajavi used her speech to call for the international community to hold the regime to account before they can destroy any more of the mass graves that serve as evidence of their crimes, which she notes is the demand of the victims’ families and the Iranian people.
Rajavi said: “The massacre of the People’s Mojahedin had another important aspect, which comprised of a vast effort to cover up this crime from the very first weeks after the start of the massacre, Massoud Rajavi issued a wave of statements, revelations, and calls for justice in Iran and abroad.”
She advised that from August 1988, Massoud began to reveal information about the massacre to any international body that would listen, including writing to the UN Secretary-General, but the international community did nothing to hold the mullahs to account.
Rajavi said: “We say to the world community, especially to Western governments, that Mullah Raisi is a criminal guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity in 1988. He is guilty because, as one of the regime’s highest Judiciary officials during the last four decades, he played a decisive role in the execution and murder of the Iranian people’s children. He is guilty because he is one of the leaders of a regime that killed 1,500 youths during the November 2019 uprising, a figure that researchers say is actually three times higher. Raisi is guilty because even today, he defends all his past crimes and insists on continuing them.”
She continued to ask the United Nations to recognize the 1988 massacre as genocide and hold the mullahs to account for that, rather than allow them to have a position at international gatherings.
On Monday, July 26, 2021, Tehran saw major protests, where people condemned the regime’s policies and chanted anti-regime slogans, just days after protests began in Khuzestan.
On Sunday, July 25, protests continued for the 11th day in a row in Khuzestan and, as the protests continue, they are spreading across the country, with the state-run media starting to acknowledge that the people’s protests are a “danger” to the regime.
The state-run Vatan-e Emrooz wrote on Saturday that the people do not trust the regime, blaming the government of outgoing president Hassan Rouhani for failing to meet the demands of the people and saying that this would cause consequences for years to come.
It wrote: “People’s problems now are not just water shortages. Economic problems are at the top of the people’s problems and certainly have a central impact on the formation of recent protests in some cities of Khuzestan.”
The state-run Iran daily agreed with the idea that Khuzestan’s problems are much more than water shortages, quoting Rouhani’s spokesperson Ali Rabie. He said that water shortages have been a major problem since 1990 but the other problems include discrimination, injustice, and industry expansions, with 25% of the people living in areas with limited facilities.
Vatan-e Emrooz questioned why the protests are causing chaos and called for the mullahs to make a decision on the matter, which implies further repression because protests are becoming “institutionalised” and warned about the impact that the Iranian Resistance is having on the people.
The paper wrote: “In the last week, the Khuzestan issue has become a problem, due to the [opposition’s] manoeuvres… Since the beginning of the revolution, the [opposition] has tried to turn any form of protest into a security issue. Thus, a reasonable attitude considers protests in the current situation dangerous.”
However, the attempt to shift blame should be ignored because the problems are far too big to be the result of just one government. Additionally, there is no difference between the regime’s factions. At least the following paper entry acknowledged the awful treatment of the Khuzestan people.
The Ebtekar daily wrote: “People in Khuzestan are deprived of their basic civil rights and are now demanding them… Street protests in the cities of this province circulate on social media and in media outlets. However, it seems that the government still lacks a convincing answer and solution to this province’s thirsty and tired people. No official has yet provided a clear answer to the people. The public sees some orders as superficial and unrealistic, rooted in the long history of officials’ unfulfilled promises.”
Certain other outlets have warned the regime against taking the sort of oppressive measures that the mullahs have enacted against the public multiple times. The regime is terrified of the people’s might because they know that the people want to (and will) overthrow the mullahs very soon.
Secretary Deborah Lee James, Former US Secretary of the Air Force (2013-2017), addressed at the Free Iran World Summit 2021 on July 10, 2021.
To the participants of the Free Iran World Summit 2021, to President-elect of the National Council of Resistance, Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, and to the millions more who are listening in Iran and around the world, including, and I might add, the mostly female led resistance units. I want to begin by thanking all of you for your dedication, your devotion and your commitment to the cause of a secular, democratic and non-nuclear Iran. I also want you to know that the government of the United States stands with you, the people of the United States stand with you, and— I, as a former Secretary of the US Air Force, a mother, a daughter and a sister— I also stand with you.
My friends, I hope you are feeling tremendous pride at this point in your history, you certainly should feel that pride, for working courageously and working together, you today form the backbone of a growing and powerful resistance to the corrupt regime in Tehran—a resistance that– with your perseverance– will never ever be silenced. So I urge you to take heart and be encouraged, for you have accomplished an enormous amount in a very short period of time. Most recently, thanks to your collective efforts and to the leadership of Mrs. Rajavi, you sent a powerful message to Iran’s Supreme Leader Khamenei and his cronies. That message quite simply was: WE SHALL NOT TAKE PART IN YOUR SHAM ELECTION!
Your successful boycott of the June 18, 2021, election, which of course came on the heels of four years of popular protest, these events showed the world, and they showed the regime in power that the Iranian people are fed up, fed up with the broken promises, the economic incompetence, the systemic corruption, the disrespect for human rights and the misogynistic treatment of the women of Iran.
If I may, let me reflect for just a moment on that last point, the misogynistic treatment of the women of Iran. How ironic that the leaders of Iran treat women as less than equals—when it is this resistance movement, led by a woman and comprised of 50 percent women—this is the very movement that will ultimately bring them down! And what a day of justice that would be.
My friends, it is precisely due to your success that the regime in Iran is currently feeling increasingly threatened. That’s in part why the June 18 vote was manipulated to elect Ebrahim Raisi—a man who is more than willing to oppress the Iranian people in an even more harsh manner in the future. Because when you lose all popular support, when you ruin an otherwise productive economy, when you allow COVID-19 to ravage your people and refuse lifesaving vaccine from the West, the only tool left in your toolbox to maintain power and keep control of the country is to crack down even more severely on those who protest and who offer an alternative vision for the future. Unfortunately, I believe this is exactly what Ebrahim Raisi may do when he takes office in August.
Ebrahim Raisi has the blood of many on his hands—and the whole world knows it. As head of Iran’s judiciary, and earlier in his career as a member of the 1988 Death Commission, he is and was responsible for overseeing unspeakable actions, including the forced disappearance and execution of thousands and thousands of political prisoners– mostly members of the MEK— and the targeting of Iranian dissidents abroad. According to Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, this man should be investigated and tried for crimes against humanity, not installed as the next President of Iran. And I, for one, wholeheartedly agree.
Now although this state of affairs may sound bleak, but I say to you again—take heart, take heart. The challenge certainly remains very very difficult; but your unity, sacrifice and persistence will surely deliver results. And I am certain that the United States wants to help.
Specifically, there is overwhelming bipartisan support in the US House of Representatives for H. Res. 118—a Resolution expressing support for the Iranian people’s desire for a democratic, secular and non-nuclear Republic of Iran. H. Res. 118 also condemns Tehran’s violations of human rights and state sponsored terrorism. As you know, Mrs. Rajavi’s 10 point plan was the model used to craft this resolution. So I want to thank her and the Iranian diaspora, including the Organization of Iranian-American Communities, in particular, for educating many of us in the United States about what’s really happening in today’s Iran. It is so very important that you keep bringing to the attention of the American people and to the world the conditions the people of Iran are really facing today. Don’t let up the pressure, keep on educating.
I now call on our Congress, including the US Senate, to finalize H. Res 118 as soon as possible. In addition, I hope the Congress and other nations will support the Biden Administration’s efforts to seek a “longer and stronger” agreement as a follow on to the reentry into the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and that any lifting of sanctions in the future would occur only after Tehran agrees and demonstrates that it has altered its behavior on terrorism, human rights, and regional destabilization. As a former Secretary of the US Air Force, I can tell you I am particularly knowledgeable about Iran’s support for terror in Yemen, Lebanon, Gaza and against US forces in Iraq, Syria and elsewhere. These actions, this behavior, simply must come to an end!
My friends, please allow me to sum up. YOU—not them—represent the future of Iran. YOU—not them—are committed to equality for all nationalities and genders. YOU—not them—believe in peaceful coexistence and respect for the United Nations charter. And if you continue to fight, to challenge, to speak out and to resist, well then, YOU—not them—will one day deliver the right of self-determination and freedom to the people of Iran.
I know that change is very very hard, change takes time, change requires enormous sacrifice—but I say once again: Keep the faith, keep up the resistance, keep telling the story—and YOU—not them– will ultimately prevail.
I thank you again for your participation in this very important conference, and most of all, I thank you for your commitment to a free Iran.
General (Ret.) James L. Jones, National Security Advisor to President Obama (2009-2010), former USMC Commandant, Supreme Allied Commander Europe, addressed at the Free Iran World Summit 2021 on July 10, 2021.
It’s an honor and a privilege to be joining you in the Free Iran World Summit this year. President-elect Maryam Rajavi, honorable guests, from all indications Iran has gone through this seminal transformation, much of the chagrin of the medieval tyrannies apologists, the Iranian regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei engineered the election of one of his most loyal and ruthless cronies, Ebrahim Raisi, to the presidency.
Raisi has risen through the ranks of the regime through barbaric murder and suppression, and became president of the regime this year through a sham election in a fraudulent process. The people of Iran boycotted the regime’s elections because they know it is an unfair and undemocratic process with a horrendous outcome. That even according to the regime’s exaggerated figures of less than 20% cast their ballots in Tehran goes to show that this regime does not have an iota of legitimacy among the Iranian people.
The election also put an end to the false narrative of the regime itself and its western apologists found the world for more than four decades of concessions and turning a blind eye on the Mullahs excesses at home and abroad is necessary to empower the so-called moderates within the ruling clique. As millions of Iranians chanted during the 2017 and 2019 nationwide uprisings, “Hardliners reformers, the game is now over.” Indeed, if the past is prologue, the policy pursued so far only strengthened the most ruthless and radical factions of this regime to the detriment of the Iranian people and regional peace and stability. The Resistance Unites MEK activists in Iran should be commended for their effective work inside Iran to encourage the people of Iran to reject this regime.
Mrs. Rajavi, your call for the boycott was heard loud and clear. Through their boycott, the Iranian people made it palpably clear that they will not be satisfied with anything less than the overthrow of this medieval theocracy, and all of its factions. Raisi’s selection also showed how weak and frail this regime has become.
During this process, Khamenei could not even trust his closest confidants like Ali Larijani, who for 12 years, was the head of the regime’s parliament. He was a secretary of the regime supreme security council, and who is now a personal adviser to Khamenei, and a special representative on foreign missions, including the deal with China.
Khamenei could not only trust someone like Raisi, a mass murder and genocidal madman who has been involved in some of the regime’s most heinous crimes. In 1988, Raisi was a member of the death committee that oversaw the execution and mass murder of over 30,000 political prisoners across Iran. The victims were buried in mass graves and their families know nothing about their fate. They were executed for their belief in democracy, and the overwhelming majority of them were members and supporters of the principle MEK.
In his first post-election news conference, Raisi, who was known as the henchmen of 1988 by the Iranian people, said he was proud of committing these crimes against humanity, and that he should be commended for protecting the regime.
The outcome of the election is an indication of what the Iranian resistance has been saying for the past four decades, that this regime is incapable of reform, and that no amount of political and economic concessions will moderate his behavior. It is somewhat inconceivable that the West does not condemn this international criminal. What more does he need to do to deserve condemnation from democratic countries? Already, leading human rights institutions and top UN Human Rights experts have called for an imperial investigation into Raisi’s role in the 1988 massacre.
Why the silence? It is time to end the culture of impunity for Tehran’s mass murderers. Enough is enough. It is disgraceful and shameful that Tehran continues to enjoy impunity some 30 years after the 1988 massacre, the massacre of at least 1,500 protesters in November 2019.
We should stop appeasing the theocratic regime in a futile quest for moderates or reformers. The genocidal regime cannot be reformed or moderated, as the rise of Raisi has shown us. Raisi’s determinants to the regime’s presidency approves once and for all, the change cannot come from within the regime, but only from the people themselves.
So, when one looks at the Iranian political landscape, one inevitably recognizes that there are only two forces arrayed against one another: the Mullahs, the NCRI, and the MEK. In other words, there is an organized and highly effective opposition, the NCRI led by Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, which offers a truly democratic and viable alternative. This is an alternative that not only enjoys support at home, but also our growing international legitimacy. Freedom is advancing both inside and outside of Iran.
The international community must support Mrs. Rajavi’s 10-point plan, which calls for a free democratic, secular and non-nuclear republic in Iran. The people of this one’s proud country deserve nothing less.
July 265, 2021: The Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran(NCRI) issued a statement regarding the protests that took place in the capital city, Tehran.
The full text of the statement is as follows:
Mid-day today, the angry youth and people of Tehran demonstrated in Jomhouri Avenue and other parts of central Tehran, chanting, “Death to the dictator,” and “Khamenei, shame on you, leave our nation alone.”
The crowd also chanted “Tanks, guns (are not going to save your regime), the mullahs must go”, “Neither Gaza, nor Lebanon, I sacrifice my life for Iran”, “Brave Iranian compatriots join us in support”.
Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), hailed the rebellious youth in Tehran and said: The sacrifices of martyrs in Khuzestan now echoes in the cries of “Death to the dictator” in Tehran’s central streets, near Khamenei’s headquarters.
The uprising continues on for the 12th day, showing that the henchman of the 1988 Massacre cannot save Khamenei from his inevitable destiny.
On Saturday, July 24, 2021, The Iranian American Community of North Texas (IACNT), supporters of the People’s Mojahedin Organization(PMOI/MEK) and the National Council of Resistance of Iran(NCRI), gathered to support the Khuzestan uprising.
The Iranian people came to the streets for their basic human rights, but they were met brutally by the regime’s forces. Our Community supports Iran Protests and condemns the regime.
It is reminded that the widespread protests and uprisings in different cities of Khuzestan Province (southwest Iran) started on Thursday night, July 15, 2021, due to water shortage. But the response of the religious dictatorship to this basic demand was repression and firing on the people.