May Day repression in Iran

Submitted by Anon on 16 May, 2006 - 12:34

May Day rallies in Tehran and Sanandaj were attacked by the Iranian security forces, with 17 demonstrators, including members of the executive board of Tehran bus workers’ union, arrested.

In the rally in Tehran, called by the bus workers’ union and held outside the bus company’s headquarters, 13 people were detained. They included eight union activists and five students. They were released a few days later. In the rally in the city of Sanandaj four people were arrested.

Around twenty thousand demonstrators defied 2,000 members of the security forces in the rally in Tehran. According to eyewitness accounts, at around 1 o’clock the security forces, which included members of the Special Guard, as well as plain clothes vigilantes on motor bikes, started attacking the demonstrators. They used batons to beat people up, dragging them on the tarmac. One bus driver had his fingers broken, and a woman demonstrator was severely beaten. The demonstrators booed the security forces, shouting ‘shame, shame’!

The slogans shouted at the demo, and written on placards, included: Our hero Ossanlou must be released! Unions are our certain right! Strike, demonstration are our certain right! No war, no bomb, but jobs! Greetings on international workers’ day!

In Sanandaj, despite raids and arrests from several days before May Day, a large rally was held, before it was attacked by the security forces.

Mansour Osanlou, the president of the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, continues to be imprisoned.

• “Call for an alliance against war in support of Iranian workers’ struggles” — see www.workersliberty.org/node/6167 or contact Workers’ Left Unity — Iran at etehadchap@yahoo.co.uk

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