Shahrokh Zamani, the well-known labour activist imprisoned in Iran’s Rajai Shahr prison, has died “suddenly”.
According to the Human Right Activists News Agency, his cell-mates found Shahrokh dead on Sunday 13 September, when they tried to wake him for his morning walk in the prison yard.
Although the Iranian authorities claim that Shahrokh has died of a stroke, his cell-mates have said that he had “black and bruised” areas on his body.
His body has now been transferred to the coroner’s officer for a post-mortem examination. We demand that the results of the autopsy are made available to international experts who have an impeccable professional reputation and a consistent track record of solidarity with labour activists.
The responsibility for Shahrokh’s death, whether due to a genuine stroke or any other so-called “natural” death, lies with the Iranian regime and its policy of systematic persecution of labour activists and socialists. Shahrokh and all other labour activists and socialists have not committed any crime and therefore should not be in prison. The slightest mishap that happens to any of them while in prison is this dictatorial regime’s responsibility.
In addition to being incarcerated and being kept away from family and friends, activists like Shahrokh are forced to go on hunger strike many times to defend their basic rights, to resist solitary confinement, frequent transfers, denial of medical care, denial of visits and a whole range of other petty measures that the regime thinks will break their spirits. These all add to our suspicion as to the official cause of Shahrokh’s death.
Sadly Shahrokh is no longer among us. We will, however, remember Shahrokh every day when we struggle to free every single jailed labour activist and political prisoner.
• Reprinted, edited, from iwsn.org
Solidarity adds: Workers’ Liberty is saddened to learn of the death of Shahrokh Zamani at the hands of the Iranian regime.
Shahrokh was a tireless fighter for the Iranian working class, and he has paid for that with his life. We send our condolences to his family and comrades.
We have campaigned for the past two years, with the Iranian Workers’ Solidarity Network and others, for Shahrokh’s release. We will continue to campaign, in Shahrokh’s honour, for the release of all political prisoners in Iran and for free trade unions and workers’ rights in Iran.
Shahrokh’s name will live on in our struggle!