MEK Network: Retirees, Teachers, Farmers, and Workers Protest Iranian Regime’s Policies as Unrest Grows
A new sector of Iranian society joined the list of striking and protesting groups on Tuesday, as retirees voiced their dissatisfaction with the mullahs’ regime in the latest round of protests in the uprising that has been ongoing since last December.
— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) October 16, 2018
Reports from MEK’s network inside Iran indicate that a crowd of retirees gathered in front of the Program and Budget organization in Tehran on Tuesday morning to protest unfair policies. Protesters from Fars and Kermanshah provinces, among others, are demanding that their salaries be increased above the poverty line to account for inflation, implementation of a coordinated payment system, balanced salaries, and payment of their insurance premiums.
State-run media reported that protesters complained that their salaries cover less than ten days of expenses each month. Regime officials recently acknowledged that retirees have lost two-thirds of their purchasing power in the past few months, though the actual numbers are far lower.
Earlier this week, teachers across Iran staged their own protests, refusing to go to their classrooms and holding sit-ins. The teachers were protesting low pay, poor benefits, looted trust reserves, the inability to form unions to advocate for their rights, and the failure of the regime to implement agreed-upon plans. Iranian teachers are also angry that their schools are underfunded, leaving their students poorly served. Finally, the teachers expressed outrage that many of their colleagues have been imprisoned for participating in unions or protesting for teachers’ rights.
— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) September 11, 2018
Students in Karaj, Qom, Qeshm, Ahvaz, and Langroud protested in support of the striking teachers. Students from Allameh University and faculty members from the Social Sciences Department of the University of Tehran protested as well, carrying handmade banners, reading: “Imprisoned teachers must be freed!
“Imprisoned students must be freed!”
“Teacher, worker, student, unity, unity!”
As protests in other sectors have gained momentum, the farmers of Varzaneh in the province of Isfahan have added their voices to the growing protest movement. The farmers are protesting the loss of their water rights and the corrupt regime policies that have led to the drying of Zayandeh Rood, which has destroyed their ability to sustain their way of life. The farmers have been protesting for several days. They made a banner addressed to regime President Rouhani, which sarcastically read: “Do not do any more to revitalize Zayandeh Rood!”
— People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) (@Mojahedineng) October 18, 2018
Workers are also part of the current protests. Hundreds of workers from the municipality of Sushtar gathered in front of the municipality’s building for the second consecutive day to protest. They have not received their salaries or bonuses for several months.
Economic unrest and dissatisfaction with the regime’s corruption and mismanagement have reached a fever pitch in Iran. Protests and strikes grow in strength and number on a daily basis.