Iran arrests more than a dozen striking steel workers in Ahvaz

by Adena Nima

According to reports from workers of the Iran National Steel Group in Ahvaz, security forces raided the homes of steel workers in an attack that continued until 2 am and detained more than a dozen workers. They have all been taken to an unknown location.

The report said that the arrests were made without warrants.

The detained steel workers were initially identified as 15 people including Meisam Ali Ghanavati, Esa Marie, Amin Alavani, Morteza Akbarian, Taregh Khalghi, Massoud Efri, Jafar Sobhani, Mostafa Abiat, Gharib Havizavi, Hossein Davoudi, Karim Siahi, Meisam Ale Mehdi, Hamed Baseri, Hafez Kan’ani, and Hamed Judaki.

The Telegram channel of the Free Iran Labor Union later said that security forces were unable to arrest Hossein Davoudi and Meisam Ale Mehdi. Many workers spent the night on the street in an attempt to evade arrest.

The ILNA state-run news agency also announced the arrest of the workers and said that more than 10 steel factory workers were detained in Ahvaz.

“We do not know why they were arrested and our information is only limited to what we have heard,” the Public Affairs head of the Ahvaz Labor Department told ILNA.

“Security systems are obviously informed about the arrest of workers and since the issue is not related to conflicts between workers and employers, the Labor Department has not been notified,” he added.

ILNA said that the Ahvaz Prosecutor refused to make comments about the arrests and told ILNA’s reporter that he was not willing to talk about the issue over the phone.

In yesterday’s rally which marked the 37th day of the Iran National Steel Group workers protests, outspoken labor activist Karim Siahi, who was detained last night, had challenged the Iranian regime in his speech.

“Don’t be afraid if they arrest you, threaten you or execute you,” he had cried out to the workers.

Iran News Wire@IranNW

Sources say that at least 15 of labor activists arrested last night.
They all participated in workers protest in Ahvaz which is continuing for 2 months. @USAdarFarsi @AmnestyIran

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Iran News Wire@IranNW

Dec 17 Ahvaz
Workers of steel factory rallied for 38th day in protest to their unpaid wages & demanding the release of detained workers
Karim Siahi, a labor activists was arrested.
He said on Dec 16 :”Don’t be afraid if they arrest you,Don’t be afraid if they executed you

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The workers came out today in full force despite the arrests and called for the release of their colleagues.

“Detained workers must be released,” they cried out in unison.

Embedded video

Iran News Wire@IranNW

Dec 17 – Ahvaz,
Authorities raided the homes of dozens of protesting National Steel Group workers in the midnight hours of Monday local time, reports indicate.
This raid, continuing until 2 am, led to the arrest of at least 15 workers.

See Iran News Wire’s other Tweets

Faced with security forces, riot police, undercover police and even Revolutionary Guards Corps and Basij forces, the workers also chanted, “We support you detained worker” and were determined to continue their protests.

The Iran National Steel Group workers are demanding the transfer of the factory back to the public sector, their unpaid wages and the release of all detained workers.

This article was first published by irannewswire

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