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The continued Iran protest in Isfahan

Isfahan’s Farmers Show They Will not be Silenced

The continued Iran protest in Isfahan

The protest against water shortages in Isfahan continues-January 2019

With sights that conjure up scenes from earlier in 2018, farmers from Isfahan province and villages and towns surrounding the Zayandeh Rud River have been making their voices heard in protests on the streets of Isfahan City.

Reports from MEK sources inside Iran indicate that the farmers have been traveling into the city to take part in vast protests over the last few days, as they have at several points in 2018, in protest of the regime’s rampant abuse of their water rights.

Regime water mismanagement has left the farmers without enough water to cultivate their crops. Despite officials making several promises to address the situation, there has been no resolution to the farmers’ drought problem.

While the exact numbers of farmers involved in the protests are unknown, a state-run news agency conceded that the crowd of farmers was so large, “the riverbed of the Zayandeh Rud could not be seen beyond Pol-e Khaju [as] the crowd of farmers had filled the space.”

However, the news network deliberately avoided all mention of the farmers’ loud chants of “death to the dictator”.

Farmers Fighting for Survival

In the face of economic ruin and starvation, the farmers’ protests have been intensifying in recent weeks. Clashes between the farmers and the Iranian regime security forces have become even more common, often resulting in the death of a number of protestors.

Hassam Kamran, a representative of Isfahan sitting in the Iranian Parliament, decried the situation in his home province. “Why are you doing this?”, he asked the regime, “the other day, eight of their people [protestors] were killed. Anything that happens in the future will be laid at the feet of [parliament speaker Ali] Larijani and the government.”

The government has attempted to frame the death of the protestors and the ongoing clashes as a security issue, however, the Iranian people know better. A group of hungry farmers on the brink of economic ruin are not a security issue. They are a population that has seen their basic human rights deprived by the repressive regime in power.

Even Kamran himself has been guilty of abusing the hardworking farmers of Isfahan. He was involved in the arbitrary plunder and the destructive policies that created this mess. But now, sensing the regime’s days are numbered, he is working tirelessly to distance himself from the atrocious policies and side with the swelling tide of protestors.

The Farmers of Isfahan are not Alone

The mullahs’ destructive and dangerous policies have left other farmers with water shortages. Farmers in Khuzestan, Charmahal Bakhtiari and many other provinces have reported crop failures due to insufficient water access.

The problem stems from the regime’s dam-building operations that have diverted the flow of water away from the agricultural heartlands.

The farmers know this and are determined to show the regime the effects of their handiwork. They shout slogans like, “farmers will die but won’t give in to disgrace” and have turned their back during Friday prayers.

The brave farmers are showing the mullahs, much like many other segments of the Iranian workforce, that they will not tolerate the systematic abuses that have been carried out by the regime’s corruption and mismanagement. This rage is bubbling below the surface across the Iranian workforce, but it is begging to break out. The consequences will be nothing short of catastrophic for the clerical regime.

Staff Writer

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The protester that raises her arm as a symbol of resistance, while stepping out of teargas

One Year Later: A Summary of Protests in Iran in 2018

The protester that raises her arm as a symbol of resistance, while stepping out of teargas

The photo symbolizes the December 2017 uprisings in Iran that has not stopped and has continued in forms of protests and strikes across the country.

December 28th marks the one year anniversary of the nationwide uprising that mobilized people from all walks of life to take to the streets in protest of Iran’s theocratic regime. The protests began in Mashhad on December 28, 2017, and spread to over 140 cities in every province in Iran over a two week period.

The initial protests were in response to the economic disaster facing the country. Poverty, corruption, inflation, and rising unemployment drove many Iranians into the streets to protests. But as the uprising grew in strength and numbers, the demonstrators began to protest the regime itself.

Protesters chanted, “Death to the dictator!”

“Death to [Supreme Leader] Khamenei!”

“Khamenei shame on you, let go of your rule!”

One year later, Iran is still the scene of daily protests and demonstrations against the authoritarian regime. The protesters have made it clear that they will not be satisfied until the ruling regime is toppled and democracy is restored to Iran.

The MEK has played a leading role in the protests taking place across Iran. As the movement to topple the mullahs’ regime has grown, the people have sought a viable alternative to the corrupt dictatorship that has destroyed Iran’s economy and environment, and that has oppressed its people for the past four decades. The MEK offers a democratic alternative that will restore freedom to Iran.

Iran News Wire summarized protest activity in Iran over the past year. The following is a summary of their report:

January

Recorded Protests: 643

Daily Average: 21

The uprising that began in December 2017 continued into January, and protests took an anti-regime turn in the month of January. Protesters set fire to Basij bases and tore down images of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.

February

Recorded Protests: 596

Daily Average: 21

March

Recorded Protests: 422

Daily Average: 14

April

Recorded Protests: 452

Daily Average: 15

May

Recorded Protests: 1,093

Daily Average: 35

June

Recorded Protests: 475

Daily Protests: 16

 

In June, bazaar merchants in Tehran launched a large-scale strike in protest of the failing economy and rising prices. Protesters in Khoramshahr took to the streets to protest water scarcity.

Protests quickly turned to calls for regime change, with chants of “Death to the Dictator!”, “Death to Rouhani!”, “Death to Khamenei!”, and “Our enemy is right here, they lie when they say it’s the U.S.!”

Women played a key role during the protests in Khorramshahr and in Khuzestan in southwest Iran.

July

Recorded Protests and Strikes: 970 in cities and regions

Daily Average: 31

August

Recorded Protests: 133

Daily Average: 20

September

Recorded Protests: 1,367 in 293 cities, villages and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 46

Iran’s truck drivers began their nationwide organized strike in September.

October

Recorded Protests: 1,533 in 323 cities, villages, and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 49

October saw the most protest activity in Iran in 2018. Truck drivers, teachers, and bazaar merchants all went on strike in October.

November

Recorded Protests: 911 in 171 cities, villages, and business and industry regions

Daily Average: 30

Iranian truck drivers went on another round of strikes in November, as did Iran’s teachers.

The workers of the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Factory workers in Shush and the Iran National Steel Group workers in Ahvaz also began striking in protest of months of unpaid wages. Their weeks-long strikes would attract international attention.

Head of Iranian Regime’s Judiciary Threatens Striking Workers

December

Recorded Protests: 273 as of December 21st

Daily Average: 9

Workers, credit union clients, retirees, students, and prisoners all protesters during the month of December.

The regime arrested a number of striking Ahvaz steelworkers and Haft Tappeh factory workers in an escalation of their previous attempts to suppress the strikes. Regime agents carried out a series of midnight raids on the houses of striking workers and arrested dozens of workers. Reports indicate that labor activist Esmail Bakhshi was tortured in prison.

Iranian truck drivers started their fifth round of strikes this month as well. Those numbers are not included in the report, which will be updated by Iran News Wire in January.

Staff Writer

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Isfahan Farmers' protest continues

Iran Protests Continue

Isfahan Farmers' protest continues

Demonstrations and sit-in of poor farmers of the cities and villages of East and West of Isfahan are continuing for the third month

Strikes and protests are still raging across Iran and show no sign of abating as workers continue to express their dissatisfaction with labor conditions and the ever-worsening economic crisis in the country.

Update (7:30 AM Thursday, November 29th): On Thursday morning, MEK sources inside Iran reported that security forces raided the home of Ali Nejati, one of the striking workers from the Haft Tappeh sugar mill. Nejati was arrested, and when his family asked to see the arrest warrant, they were beaten by police.

The factory workers marched to the mayor’s office, chanting, “Imprisoned workers must be freed!” and “Nationalize the company!”

Iranian drivers from across the country have expressed their solidarity with the striking factory workers through video messages. One driver said, “I understand your situation. I am a driver and we too are facing harsh conditions. I stand with you and wish you the best of luck in achieving your demands.”

Haft Tappeh Sugar Factory Workers’ Strikes

Thursday was the 25th consecutive day of strikes for the factory workers at the Haft Tappeh Sugar mill in Shush. The workers are striking in protest of months of unpaid wages and the privatization of the company.

The workers published a list of their demands on their Telegram channel and in a written statement. Their demands include basic labor rights such as regular payment of salaries, employer payment of insurance fees, job security for contract workers, and provision of work tools and materials.

Protests Continue to Rage in Ahvaz and Shush

Most of the workers’ demands are already guaranteed under the Iranian regime’s labor laws, but these laws are not being enforced. For example, Iranian labor law dictates that employers are responsible for providing transportation or compensation for transportation for their employees’ commute to and from work. Haft Tappeh has ignored this regulation altogether. Employers are also required by law to provide one hot meal per shift. This law has also been disregarded by Haft Tappeh’s owners.

The regime has responded to the workers’ demands by sending suppressive forces to arrest the striking workers and by dispatching the head of the regime’s judiciary to threaten the strikers and accuse them of sedition.

The Haft Tappeh factory workers have also asked for the release of their colleague, Esmail Bakhshi, as part of their demands. Bakhshi is a spokesperson for the protesters who was arrested with several others as part of a crackdown by suppressive forces last week. After the striking workers and a growing number of supporters rallied for their release, the regime relented and released the other jailed protesters, but Bakhshi remains in custody.

Farmers’ protests enter the third month

The farmers of Isfahan are entering their third consecutive month of protests over the lack of access to water, which has wreaked havoc on agriculture in the province. Agriculture is the primary source on income in Isfahan, so virtually everyone in the region has been affected by the scarcity of water due to the drying of the Zayanderud River.

Isfahan’s farmers blame the water crisis on the regime’s corruption and mismanagement of the country’s water resources. Over the past two decades, the regime has diverted the Zayanderud River, which supplies water to the Isfahan region, to its factories upstream of Isfahan, leaving the once-prosperous farmers without water to irrigate their crops. This, combined with droughts, has left the farmers without a source of income.

The Isfahan farmers have protested by blocking streets with their tractors and machinery and camping in intersections of cities and towns.

On November 25th, farmers in the village of Qarnah destroyed water pipes to prevent the transfer of water from their village to other regions. Special Guard mercenaries responded by attacking the farmers with tear gas, injuring several of the protesters. The farmers chanted: “Zayandeh Rood water is our absolute right!” “We die, we do not accept humiliation!” and “The farmer is awake, he hates (empty) promises!”

Also on November 25th, farmers in Qarnah staged a sit-in at the Qarnah mosque. State security forces attacked the protesters there and broke the mosque’s windows in the process.

The striking farmers at that sit-in held banners proclaiming: “We want our water rights!” “Do not split our Zayandeh Rood!” “Is there any helper?” “Death with dignity is better than life with humiliation!”  “Until when false promises?”

The water crisis has reached such epic proportions that regime has been forced to acknowledge it, at least in part. Hasan Kamran, a member of the regime’s parliament who represents Isfahan, admitted that the Ministry of Energy has given 1,592 million cubic meters of water to Isfahan Steel, Iron and Steel and military industries, leaving the people of Isfahan to survive on wastewater. “The law of water right goes back to 1964, and the Ministry of Energy had no legal right to change it and sell the water,” he said in an October 21st interview with a state-run media outlet.

In an earlier interview with Radio Farhang, Kamran said: “For a decade, water right of the farmers of Isfahan has been plundered… We have lied to them for 10 years… On the one hand, the bank brings an arrest warrant because he (the farmer) was unable to pay his debt. On the other hand, we give his wheat money late, we don’t give him compensation, we steal his water right; who is stealing from him? The same Ministry of Energy.”

Nasser Mousavi Largani, another member of the regime’s parliament, described the current agricultural conditions of Isfahan’s farmers in dire terms. “The farmers of Ghahderijan – their land has turned into desert. They do not have bread to eat. Likewise, the farmers of Pirbakon,” he said.

Ali Bakhtiar, another member of the regime’s parliament, told the Parliament News Agency that

the number of dairy cattle has dwindled from 50-60 thousand to less than 30 thousand. “Livestock is really disappearing … 70-80% of poultry farms in the region are not used,” said Bakhtiar.

The MEK salutes Isfahan’s striking farmers and calls upon all Iranians, particularly the youth, to join in solidarity with their protests and to support them in their demands for water rights.

Staff Writer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rally in Isfahan against the dire economic situation.

Khamenei Breaks Silence on Plunge of Rial and Protests, Blames Government for Crisis

Rally in Isfahan against the dire economic situation.

Archive-Protest in Isfahan against the Iranian regime’s corruption and the declining economic situation.

On Monday, August 13th, regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei finally broke his silence about the free fall of the rial and the swell of protests that have taken place across Iran since July 31st. His remarks made it clear that he has no solutions to the problems facing Iran.

 

Khamenei attempted to address growing concerns that the rank-and-file of the regime has become dissatisfied, saying, “Some wickedly propagate that the country is at an impasse and that there is no way out other than reaching out to some Satan or the Great Satan. Whoever says we have reached an impasse is either ignorant or his remarks are treasonous.”

Khamenei blamed the corruption in his regime on a few rogue agencies or people, refusing to acknowledge that the corruption extends to the regime as a whole, adding, “Some go too far in their remarks, calling all as corrupt, by referring to the term systematic corruption… Some are careless in their remarks and writings. One cannot extend corruption in some agencies or among some people to the country as a whole.”

 

Khamenei blamed his own regime’s president, Hassan Rouhani, for the catastrophic economic situation in Iran, confirming rumors of infighting among the highest levels of the regime. Khamenei feigned ignorance about his own regime’s decision to  plunder Iran’s wealth on nuclear missile programs and warmongering in the region. blaming these actions on Rouhani.

 

 

He also blamed Rouhani for failing to prepare for U.S. sanctions, saying, “Most of the recent economic problems are due to the measures taken within the country. If actions are taken more efficiently, more prudently, more swiftly and more firmly, sanctions cannot have much effect.”

 

Khamenei indirectly blamed his government for plundering “18 billion dollars of the country’s existing currency,” warning that the judiciary would deal with “those who caused the fall in the value of the national currency.”

 

Khamenei personally oversaw nuclear negotiations with P5+1 and was fully aware of the situation, but he passed on the blame to Rouhani and Javad Zarif, saying, “On the issue of the negotiations, I made a mistake and because of the officials’ [Rouhani and Javad Zarif] insistence I allowed to test this. But the specified red lines were crossed.”

Despite these attacks on his own government, Khamenei then backtracked, fearful that any change to the regime would weaken the already faltering regime further. He said, “Those who say the government must be dismissed are playing into the enemy’s plans. The government must remain in place and carry out its duties in resolving the difficulties with strength.”

Khamenei has a history of blaming others for his own failures. Khamenei spoke against protesters in June, blaming the MEK for anti-government sentiment, saying, ““Since day one after the revolution, hypocrite groups [the derogatory name regime uses doe MEK] have existed, making a stance against our Islamic state and… creating problems for us”.

Khamenei spoke out once again on Monday about the recent protests that have shaken the regime to its core, breaking his silence for the first time since the newest wave of protests began on July 31st. He described the widespread protests as “August incidents, which despite enormous financial and political investment by the enemy turned out to be very limited.” The week-long protests, which took place in a number of cities in Iran, including Tehran, Karaj, Isfahan and Mashhad, were widely attended by people from all walks of life. Chants of “Death to the dictator!” and “Death to Khamenei!” were heard on streets all over Iran.

 

Khamenei acknowledged that the regime is currently in a vulnerable state, saying, “We will not negotiate with America.” He went on to say, “We can enter into the dangerous gambit of negotiating with America only when we have reached the economic, political and cultural prowess which we envision…. But, negotiating now will certainly be to our detriment and is prohibited…. Even if we were to negotiate with the Americans, this being an impossible assumption itself, we would for sure never negotiate with the current (U.S.) government.”

With these words Khamenei made it clear that any change to the regime would lead to regime change.

 

Khamenei completely rejected the possibility of war, disappointing those who would would deny the people of Iran the power to take power back into their own hands, saying, “They raise the specter of a war. But there will be no war. There will definitely be no war.”

The people of Iran have made it clear they are tired of the regime’s meddling in the affairs of other countries. Protesters in recent demonstrations chanted, “Leave Syria alone, think of us!”  Despite the people’s opposition to the regime’s warmongering, Khamenei said, “We have helped the two friendly countries, Syria and Iraq in the face of threats by America and the Saudis.”

 

Khamenei’s remarks proved once again how little regard he has for the will of the people. And his willingness to publicly blame his own government show that the regime is crumbling from the inside.

Staff Writer

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Demonstrations in Mashhad, Iran- December 2017

History of Iranian Uprising since December 2017

Demonstrations in Mashhad, Iran- December 2017

Archive Photo- Demonstration in Mashhad against the high prices – December 2017

On December 28, 2017, a protest began on the streets of Mashhad that triggered an uprising that continues on eight months later.

This new wave of protests has been marked by continuity. But the uprising can be divided into three main phases. Mojahedin.org reported on the three phases of the current uprising taking place in Iran.

Phase One

The first phase started on December 28, 2017 with a protest about inflation. It quickly mutated into a series of anti-government protests targeting the regime as a whole. The protests lasted until January 6, 2018. Though the uprising has ebbed and flowed, it has continued in one form or another since then.

Phase Two

The second phase of the uprising started in March 2018, at the beginning of the Iranian New Year.

The Ahwazi Arabs began protesting on March 28, 2018. The farmers of Isfahan took to the streets after the start of the new year, taking the lead in the uprising. The farmers had already begun protesting for water rights before the beginning of the new year. The authorities cracked down on the farmers, making widespread arrests.

On April 14th, the people of Kazerun began weeks of protests for freedom. Four protesters were killed when security forces opened fire upon a crowd of protesters in May.

On May 10th, teachers went on a nationwide strike in 34 cities across Iran. Their strike had a major impact on the next events in the uprising.

The border city bazaars went on strike in April and May, and on May 14th the strikes spread to Tehran’s Grand Bazaar and then to other cities.
On May 22nd, Iran’s truckers began a nationwide strike that spread to almost every province in the country. The strike had a deep impact on the regime. The strikes were widespread, highly visible, difficult to suppress, and enjoyed popular support. The truck drivers strikes drew a great deal of attention to the regime’s incompetence.

Phase Three

On July 23rd, Iran’s truck driver’s began their second round of strikes. The regime made a number of concessions and promises for reform after the first round of strikes, but most of these had gone unfulfilled.

 

On July 31st, the industrial workers of the Shapur district in Isfahan were joined by other citizens of Isfahan in a grand uprising after the plunge in value of the rial. The uprising quickly spread to a number of other cities, including Shiraz, Karaj, Arak, Mashhad, and Tehran. Calls for regime change were reported by the MEK network inside Iran within the first day of protests.

The third phase of the Iranian uprising is currently in progress. Protesters are asking for the same things they have asked for in past uprisings: Freedom, economic opportunity, human rights, and a free and democratic government.

Characteristics of the Current Uprising

 

Since the mullahs took power in the 1979 revolution, there have been a number of protests and uprisings. These protests and uprisings may be organized into three major cycles.

 

The Iran student protests of 1999:

 

These protests consisted mostly of students and resulted from an internal power struggle between “reformists” and conservatives within the Iranian regime. Protesters hoped to find a solution within the existing political system.

 

 

The 2009 Iranian election protests:

 

These protests included the middle and upper classes of Iran and also resulted from internal struggles between “moderates” and conservatives. In contrast to the 1999 protests, the 2009 protests were not limited to students and included Iranians of different education levels, ethnicities, and origins. The protests were widespread, including virtually every major city. And while protesters initially hoped to find a solution within the system, as the protests grew and spread, that hope was abandoned and the protesters turned on the regime as a whole.

 

2017-present uprisings:

 

The ongoing uprising is fundamentally different in nature from past protest movements. These difference could lead to its eventual success in overthrowing the regime.

 

Protesters are looking outside of the system for answers. The Iranian people have learned that the myth of the moderate is a lie. Rouhani promised reform during the election and has failed to follow through on a single promise. The MEK network has repeatedly reported chants of “Moderates, conservatives, the game is over!” at protests. Protests on issues as diverse as water access and economic stability turn to calls for regime change within hours. The people are done with the lie that “moderates” are willing or able to change the system.

 

Second, the current uprising is unprecedented in its duration. The uprising has lasted for over eight months. In the almost 40 years of the mullahs’ rule, no wave of protests has ever lasted this long. This is despite the brutal crackdown by the regime.

 

Third, the protests are comprised of a wide range of Iranians from across the political spectrum and from every class, ethnicity, and occupation. Farmers, merchants, truckers, and industrial workers are all marching side by side for freedom. Young people march for a secular government, while religious protesters go to Friday prayers and turn their backs on regime-backed prayer leaders, chanting, “We turn our backs to the enemy, and embrace the country!” Fully chador-clad women join protesters on the streets after Friday prayers, chanting, “Our enemy is right here, they lie about it being America!”

 

Finally, the Iranian regime is in a tailspin due to its corruption, mismanagement, incompetence, and sanctions. In the past, the mullahs have been able to use oil profits to cover for their incompetence. But the economy is no longer able to sustain decades of mismanagement. Experts estimate Iran’s inflation rate is between 100-200 percent per year, and the rial has dropped 100 percent in value against the U.S. dollar in the past six months alone. With the economy in free fall, the mullahs may have lost any leverage they once had to deal with dissent from the people.

 

The people are no longer afraid of the regime’s security forces. Phase three may be the final phase of the uprising.

Staff Writer

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Iranian regime plain cloth forces arrest a young protester in Iran

MEK Network: Fact Sheet on Protest Suppression

Iranian regime plain cloth forces arrest a young protester in Iran

A protester arrested by murderous plain cloth forces, during Iran Protest – August 5, 2018

A report based on MEK network inside Iran on the regime’s suppression of the recent protests in Iran was published recently. The protests are part of a larger uprising that has grown from economic unrest due to the fall in the value of the rial as U.S. sanctions are set to resume. Calls for regime change have been widespread among protesters in cities across the country.

 

The recent protests and demonstrations in Iran began on Tuesday, July 31st, in several cities. Riot police, security forces and plainclothes agents

were dispatched to the scenes of the protests to disperse the gatherings and subsequently beat and arrested unarmed protesters. A young man identified by the MEK network as Reza Otadi was shot and killed by security forces while protesting in Gohardasht, Karaj on August 3rd.

The MEK network has prepared a fact sheet about acts of suppression by security forces during the recent protests. The information initially published by Iran HRM has been summarized below:

Tuesday,  July 31st

Shiraz: The regime’s police force fired tear gas onto the protesters, hitting a seven-year-old boy in the face.

Karaj: Protesters were beaten by riot police and plainclothes police officers. The regime used water cannons to disperse protesters at night.

Wednesday August 1st

Isfahan: Suppressive forces maintained a heavy presence in the main streets of Isfahan, there were attacks on protesters in several areas. Protesters who had gathered underneath a bridge were also attacked by riot police.

 

Security forces in Noavaran Square stood in a row in front of protesters to attempt to block their path, then used water cannons on them to push the crowd back and disperse them. In another area, security forces clashed with protesters, firing tear gas and bullets into the crowd.

Rasht: Riot police and security forces using batons and Tasers, beat protesters severely, injuring several.

 

Karaj: Protesters were beaten by riot police and security forces.

Thursday, August 2nd

Isfahan: Riot police fired tear gas and pellet guns into a crowd of protesters. The protesters responded by throwing rocks at the police. The police subsequently fired live ammunition into the crowd, shooting a young protester in the leg.

 

Ahvaz: Agents of the regime attacked small groups of people who were standing on the street.

 

Tehran: Security forces in Valiasr Square assaulted and arrested several protesters.

 

Shahin Shahr, Isfahan: Bassij forces from the Revolutionary Guards Corps confronted and severely beat people.

Shiraz: A heavy security presence was in place in Shiraz. Security forces on motorcycles attempted to intimidate protesters by patrolling the area and attacking protesters. Plainclothes agents attacked protesters as well. Riot police fired tear gas into the crowds. Undercover agents went into the crowds of protesters to detain participants.

 

Qahdarijan, Isfahan: Riot police shot tear gas into crowds after clashes with protesters.

Karaj: Protesters were attacked on the streets by Bassij forces. Riot police fired tear gas at protesters. As night fell, riot police attempted to intimidate the protesters by marching on the street with motorcycle police following behind them.

 

Mashhad: Police shot tear gas at protesters from motorcycles and from on foot. A number of protesters were detained.

 

Friday,  August 3rd

Shahin Shahr, Isfahan: Riot police shot tear gas into crowds of protesters, as police assaulted protesters with their batons. Riot police attempted to intimidate the protesters by patrolling the streets on motorcycles. Protesters were attacked by Bassij forces.

 

Karaj: A large presence of security forces of all types was dispatched to the protests in Karaj. Many riot police were on the scene to fire tear gas and pellet guns into the crowds of protesters. Riot police also assaulted the protesters. Bassij forces, Revolutionary Guards Corps agents, and plainclothes agents attacked protesters with batons. Security forces shouted their support for the regime’s Supreme Leader while they beat the protesters.

 

Security forces opened fire into the crowd. A young man, identified as Reza Otadi, was killed by security forces in the protests. Another young man was shot in the arm and taken to the hospital for treatment.

 

Tehran: A heavy security presence was active in Tehran, with a large number of both police and plainclothes agents. Police arrested a number of people in Valiasr Square, both men and women.

 

People who filmed the protests with cellphones were arrested. Police attacked a number of people with batons and Tasers, singling out women.

 

Bujnord, North Khorasan Province: At least ten people were detained by security forces. Numerous protesters were attacked.

 

Saturday,  August 4tt

Karaj: About 100 Bassij forces and Intelligence agents posed as protesters during the day, wearing masks and participating in the protests. As night fell, riot police attacked on motorcycles and the undercover agents began arresting people, pulling the protesters’ shirts over their heads and forcing them onto a bus.

 

Qahdarijan, Isfahan: Security forces shot guns into the air.

Eshtehard, Karaj: Protesters who had gathered outside of the Eshterhard Seminary were attacked and detained by security forces.

Sunday,  August 5th

Tehran: Protesters in South Kargar Street were attacked by riot police. Numerous people were arrested.

 

Security forces were positioned in every major street to prevent any gathering.

 

Internet lines were slowed and then completely shut off for a few hours overnight. Nothing could be sent out.

Karaj: A water cannon and several different armored vehicles were brought into the streets, along with at least 30 security forces on motorcycles and almost 50 plainclothes agents in masks. All of the streets leading to Gohardasht were barricaded with cement barrier blocks. Cameras were installed in strategic locations to identify protesters. Security forces threatened store owners around Gohardasht and told them to close their shops. Bassij forces were armed with sticks, agents carried batons and other equipment, plainclothes agents carried weapons under their clothes to beat protesters. Security forces beat and detained a number of protesters. They shot tear gas into the crowd at frequent intervals. In other areas of Tehran, riot police and tanks were brought out.

 

 

 

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A protester in Isfahan resisting the IRGC forces who had attacked the protesters.

An Unstoppable Force: the Rising Tide of Iran’s Protest Movement

A protester in Isfahan resisting the IRGC forces who had attacked the protesters.

A young Iran protester shows victory sign, while joining fellow protesters to push back on repressive IRGC forces in Isfahan

On Friday, August 3rd, Fox News published an article on its website from Ben Evansky, titled “Iran’s Widespread and Growing Protests Push Citizens to Brink”. Evansky outlined the rising discontent among the Iranian population.

 

His article comes at a prominent moment. The residents of Isfahan have joined the nation’s truck drivers in their protests, and protests in Tehran continue to rage.

The economy is in sharp decline as decades of mismanagement has caused rampant currency inflation. On top of a spiralling economy, Iranian’s have to contend with water shortages and price increases for basic essentials like food and drink.

A Growing Protest Movement

Evansky describes how in these uncertain times, the Iranian protest movement is rapidly expanding. The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) and their activists have published footage on social media of the protests in Iran. Tehran’s residents can be heard chanting “the mullahs must get lost”.

Similar images have been released from Arak. Protestors there are using the slogan, “no to Gaza, no to Lebanon, my life for Iran” (referring to the mullahs use of Iranian finances to fund foreign conflicts and terrorist organizations abroad while Iran’s own population goes hungry and thirsty).

In his article, Evansky analyzed the slogans used by the Iranian population during the protests and discovered they provide significant insight into the opposition movement. Firstly, the women of Isfahan province are among the chanters and protestors. Fox News based on analysis of an Iran analyst, asserted that the women of Najafabad in Isfahan province “used to be a traditional bastion of regime support”. Now, these same women are in the streets shouting, “they fed Syria but made our young people turn old”.

It is not just the women of Isfahan, other segments of the regime’s support base are turning against them. The urban and rural poor, the day laborers, the farmers, and the factory workers have all joined the protest movement, uniting all segments of Iranian society in opposition.

Fox News goes on to suggest that this could be a pivotal moment for the Iranian opposition. The residents of the regime heartlands have been the mullahs’ foundations of support. Those residents are now beginning to realise that the mullahs do not have their best interests at heart. This realisation casts uncertainty on the mullahs’ future in power.

The Role of the US

Many in the US government have proposed supporting the Iranian protestors. In his article, Evansky cited a spokesman for Republican Senator Ted Cruz who said that “the United States should be doing everything possible to support these protestors”.

The US government’s stance towards the mullahs is hardening. Since Donald Trump withdrew the US from the Iran deal, he has passed a new round of sanctions, urged European nations to adopt a tougher stance, and put a resolution through Congress pledging US support to the Iranian protestors.

Falling Dominoes

The latest protests and the hardening position of the international community towards the mullahs has set in motion a series of events that will lead to the ultimate collapse of the clerical regime. Like falling dominoes, the rapidly expanding protest movement will become too great for the mullahs to repress and silence.

The President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Maryam Rajavi, emphasized the importance of keeping the current movement going. In a statement, she exclaimed, “Iran’s risen and revolting cities are joining the protests, one after the other. The cry for freedom is becoming louder, and the uprising is expanding more and more every moment.”

Rajavi ended her statement by celebrating the powerful political force the Iranian public hold in their hands and their voices. “The is no force more powerful than the united force of young people”.

 

 

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Iranian diaspora will gather to support Iran Protests

Europe Must Not Become the Jimmy Carter of 1977

Iranian diaspora will gather to support Iran Protests

Iranians in Europe and America, will gather in Paris this June to show support for Iran Protests

In 1977, Iran was on the precipice of change. Yet on December 31st, US President Jimmy Carter described Iran as an “island of stability in one of the more troubled areas of the world”. Ironically, just a few months later, Iran would become engulfed in protests against the Shah’s regime and the country, which once appeared so stable, underwent drastic changes.

Today, Iran appears to be in a similar situation to 1978. Protests litter Iran. The people take to the streets at every given opportunity to display their displeasure towards the Iranian regime. On Sunday, May 27th, the Iranian public gathered to celebrate the life of film star, Naser Malek Motiei at a large public funeral service. It quickly transformed into a demonstration against the mullahs and their clerical regime, as protesters began chanting “death to the dictator, hail to Naser!”

Elsewhere, a truck driver strike has raged for more than a week. Truck drivers went on strike in hundreds of cities across all 31 Iranian provinces to vent their frustration at poor working conditions and unfair tariffs imposed by the regime. Despite petrol stations sitting empty, and long queues, the drivers have the support of the people. They know the difficulty Iran’s industries are facing without the existence of trade unions and the greedy mullahs imposing harsh taxes, fees, and tariffs at every opportunity.

In Kazerun, initial protests against the regime grew in intensity after the Iranian security forces opened fire on protestors. Four protestors were killed in the incident, leading to further public outcry and demonstrations at the martyr’s funerals.

In the last full week of May, there were more than 489 individual acts of defiance and protest against the regime. This amounted to some 69 protests every day. They were not limited by geography or demographic either, students, farmers, teachers, truck drivers, and shopkeepers were among those that took to the streets. In Tehran itself, strikes from local market stall owners left many shops and stalls closed.

The Regime’s Repressive Measures Will Not Work This Time

The regime has responded to the widespread protests with violent reprisals and repressive measures. They arrested protestors, fired on them with live ammunition, resorted to threats and blackmail, and carried out torture on suspects in prison. But the people will not be deterred.

Fury drives the Iranian public. Fury at their economic circumstances, poverty is rife across Iran, as is unemployment and drought. They know that without regime change, they have no chance of escaping a life of poverty. The mullahs’ and Rouhani’s regime divert the flow of money into their own pockets. Corruption is widespread. Until these issues are addressed, the people will not be silenced. This is why the regime’s violence and barbaric suppression tactics will not work.

The more protests erupt, the more the people can see regime change on the horizon. Each act of protest inspires the next. This momentum in Iran’s opposition movement is loosening the mullahs’ grip on power.

The most recent spate of protests has also been far better organized and coordinated than anything in Iran’s history. The People’s Mujahedin Organisation of Iran (MEK) has played a central role in the organization of the protests. With a strong organizational network and widespread public support, the protest movement can only get stronger.

Europe’s Role

Europe is in danger of echoing Jimmy Carter’s position in 1977. The Iranian public has demonstrated their hunger for regime change. The protest movement within Iran is gathering steam, and the position of the mullahs looks untenable.

Europe would be well-placed to avoid financial investment in Iran. Iran has no future with Rouhani and his cronies. The sooner Europe realizes that, the better.

Staff writer

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Map of Protests in Iran-April and May 2018

MEK Network: A Summary of Protests in Iran in April 2018

Map of Protests in Iran-April and May 2018

SCHEMATIC DIAGRAM OF RECENT PROTESTS IN IRAN-Credit to irane-ma.com

A recent report from Our Iran described protests in Iran during the month of April 2018. The report that is mainly based on reports from the Mujahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) network inside Iran, indicates that there were a total of 452 protests and gatherings last month in Iran, averaging 15 per day. Protesters came from all walks of life, from farmers to teachers to those looted by financial institutions. Women and youth made up a sizable proportion of those protesting. The April protests can be broken down as follows:

 

  • Labor protests: 109
  • Plundered people protests: 39
  • Student protests: 16
  • Retiree protests: 7
  • Teacher protests: 8
  • Other sectors: 245

 

Workers

Reports from MEK’s network, shows, labor protests made up a large percentage of total protests in April. Workers protested for many reasons, including lack of employment, dismissals, failure of employers to pay wages, job uncertainty, and recruitment of non-partisan forces.

 

Victims of Plundering

Protests by looted people took place in 13 cities across Iran in April. Women played a large part in these protests. Protesters closed buildings and looted businesses, throwing garbage and rotten eggs and fruit at the businesses that looted their financial accounts.

 

Retirees

Retirees protested in two cities in Iran this April. They protested the retirement age, lack of benefits and matching funds for retirees, and the inability to achieve the required years of service in order to retire.

 

Teachers

MEK network also reports that Iranian teachers gathered in five different cities to protest the withholding of their salaries for months and sometimes up to a year. A number of teachers resigned en masse in response to rumors that Director General of Education was going to be dismissed. And teachers protested for the release of Mohammad Habibi, a teacher who was detained by the regime. After a series of protests for his freedom, the regime bowed to pressure and released him.

 

Students

University students held protests in eight cities across Iran in April. They had a variety of concerns, including the firing of a professor, more possible firings of faculty, poor food quality on campuses, mismanagement and corruption by university officials, and poor wages and employment status. Students also protested in support of striking businessmen and marketers in Kurdistan.

 

Other Protests

Another 245 protests reported by MEK sources in Iran in 73 cities did not fit into any of the above categories. The protesters and their causes were varied and diverse. There were protests against closing border crossings and increasing tariffs. Kurdish businessmen and marketers protested an offensive characterization by state media. Farmers protested against poor economic conditions. Farmers and many other citizens protested unfair water rights and lack of access to water.

 

The number of protests grew from March to April as the widespread uprising against the ruling regime continues. May is on pace to surpass the April protests.

Staff Writer

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Maryam Rajavi Reaps Praise on the Brave Iranians Turning out to Protest Across the Ruling Dictatorship

Maryam Rajavi Reaps Praise on the Brave Iranians Turning out to Protest Across the Ruling Dictatorship

Maryam Rajavi Reaps Praise on the Brave Iranians Turning out to Protest Across the Ruling Dictatorship

Maryam Rajavi Reaps Praise on the Brave Iranians Turning out to Protest Across the Ruling Dictatorship-Credit to maryam-rajavi.com

 Maryam Rajavi, leader of the People’s Mujahedin of Iran (MEK), praised the resolve of the Iranian people for the sustained protests and strikes in major cities across Iran. Strikes have continued to rage in Kazeroun for the last seven days. The farmer’s protests in Isfahan are also still going strong two months into their struggle. Protests in Ahvaz and Khuzistan have also sprung up in recent weeks.

Rajavi reaped praise from those protesting in Kazeroun, stating “hail to the people of Kazeroun who have a great history of supporting the great leader of Iran’s freedom movement, Dr. Mohammad Mossaddeq.” After Kazeroun citizens were arbitrarily butchered by the regime in 1988, many of the city’s citizens joined the MEK and the resistance movement to oppose the mullah’s tyrannical regime.

Maryam Rajavi hailed those exercising civil disobedience in Isfahan, Kazeroun, and Ahvaz, praising those who disrupted the mullah’s Friday prayers. Those in Baneh and Piranshahr who went on strike and closed their businesses also received Maryam Rajavi’s blessings.

She spoke of the plight of Iran’s Kurdish minority, forced into back-breaking work as porters for the regime. Rajavi described how they often face water shortages, are denied their rightful earnings, and endure routine discrimination at the hands of the oppressive regime. All those in Iran suffer at the hands of Rouhani, but the minorities of the Kurdish, Arab and Baluchi people face “double oppression”, according to Rajavi.

The message from the leader of the MEK was clear; keep up the good work and disrupt the mullah’s regime wherever possible. Massoud Rajavi, the historical leader of the Iranian Resistance had previously sent a message to the Iranian people. He said, “it is an urgent patriotic duty to keep alight the beacon of protests at any opportunity, any time and any place.”

The Iranian population must show their solidarity with those who are risking their freedom and lives to protest the oppressive regime. Only through continued civil disobedience and disruption will the full weight of the Iranian population be felt by the ruling mullahs.

The regime is creaking under the pressure of sustained civil protest. It is intensifying its reign of terror and violence, executing political prisoners at an alarming rate, and arresting brave Iranian protestors across Kazeroun in scores. Rouhani and the mullahs are scrambling to maintain their grip on the situation.

This will only add fuel to the fire. It will inspire the Iranian people to insist on the freedom of their compatriots. “Declare solidarity with the arisen people of the Iranian provinces” is Maryam Rajavi’s message to Iran. Keep the flame of protest alive.

Staff Writer

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