1700 Iranian workers on hunger strike

Starving to feed their families.

Starving to feed their families.

1700 Iranian workers on hunger strike over unpaid wages – 1700 employees of Wagon Pars Company in Arak have gone on a hunger strike to protest the company’s failure to pay their wages and pension. ILNA’s Kar news agency reports that this is the ninth protest organized by the employees this year.

The workers have announced that if their demands are not met, they will block the highway entrance to the City of Arak. Mohammad Reza Madahi, deputy chief of the company’s Islamic Workers Association announced: ” 75 days of unpaid wages and retiree pensions and benefits” were the cause of the protests in the past six months.

Manouchehr Moghaddam, executive director of Arak Wagon Pars Factory has confirmed the two-month delay in payment of the workers’ salaries and said that the main stockholders of the company are responsible for it.

Deputy Chief of the worker’s association announced that the workers have started a hunger strike because their picket lines were broken and strikers were dispersed in order to admit a visiting party from Kazakhstan.

The workers have announced that the hunger strike will continue until their demands are met.

Some of the company’s possessions have already been confiscated by order of the court for its “failure to honour its agreements.” Today office equipment of the company was confiscated by company pensioners who have not received their pay for many months.

Wagon Pars Company started work in 1976 building various kinds of wagons for trains and in 1986 it merged with Industry and Innovations Department of Iran. It is one of the largest manufacturers of rail and rolling vehicles in Iran.

The company was recently privatized following the execution of new government policies.

ILNA news agency and Payvand 10 Oct 2009

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