Execution is a weapon of choice for the Iranian regime when dealing with trade unionists, leftists, and Iran’s ethnic minorities. Below we link to a letter by death row prisoners Zanyar and Loghman Moradi, of Iran’s Kurdish minority. After a trial lasting 20 minutes, the pair were convicted for allegedly assassinating the son of a senior cleric. False confessions were procured by torture during a 30-month imprisonment. Zanyar and Loghman maintain their innonence, and Amnesty International has highlighted their case.
While fighting the threat of war on Iran, the left in this country should give no succour to such a regime, which uses those threats to clamp down on internal dissent. HOPI demands the immediate release of all political prisoners and the abolition of the death penalty in Iran.
Workers from Sanandaj’s Javeh dam have once again gone on strike as of July 10, 2010. Workers of the dam have gone on strike several times in recent months over non payment of their wages dating back more than five months.
More than 300 workers building the dam have not received their wages for this year. Additionally, fifteen of those workers were laid off without payment of wages. As a result the workers of Sanandaj’s Javeh dam are facing very poor living conditions.
اعتصاب مجدد کارگران سد مخزنی ژاوه در سنندج
کارگران سد مخزنی ژاوه در سنندج صبج دیروز، شنبه نوزدهم تیرماه، دست به اعتصاب زدند
بنا به اطلاع گزارشگران هرانا، ایشان براي چندمين بار در طول ماه های گذشته و در اعتراض به عدم پرداخت 5 ماه حقوق معوقه خويش در مقابل دفتر شركت پيمانكار اين سد در محوطه كارگاهي اين سد اعتصاب کردند
ازمان اعتصاب قبلی ایشان برای احقاق حقوق خود مربوط به اواخر خردادماه سال جاری بود
بیش از 300 کارگر شاغل در پروژه ساخت این سد از اواخر سال گذشته تاکنون دستمزدهای معوقه خود را دریافت نکرده اند و دستکم 15 تن از ایشان در فروردین ماه سال جاری بدون دریافت حقوق معوقه از کار اخراج شده بودند
گفته می شود کارگران سد مخزنی ژاوه در سنندج، در وضعیت معیشتی بسیار بدی به سر می برند
On May 13th around 30 members of Hands Off the People of Iran along, Iranian students and exiles demonstrated in support of the general strike in Iranian Kurdistan and protest the executions of five political prisoners on May 9th in Evin prison. Those executed were school teacher and trade unionist Farzad Kamangar, Ali Haydarian, Farhad Vakili, Shirin Alam-Houli and Mehdi Eslamian. We rallied outside the University of Manchester Students’ Union and the BBC building spreading leaflets and literature on the situation. There were speeches by Iranian refugees who explained the situation in Iran the recent repressive measures in both English and Farsi.
Chris Strafford from HOPI’s national steering committee condemned the executions and the ongoing torture and incarceration of political prisoners within Iran, he also spoke about the negative impact of sanctions and that the key task for socialists in the UK is to oppose sanctions and military threats whilst building solidarity with the truly democratic movements. Afterwards he read out a letter by Farzad Kamangar sent to other prisoners titled ‘Be Strong Comrades’ you can see the videos here and here.
Hands Off the People of Iran demands:
* The immediate end to executions in Iran
* The unconditional and immediate release of all political prisoners
* An end to the sanctions regime and imperialist threats
Five political prisoners were executed on May 9 2010 in Evin prison in Tehran. Farzad Kamangar, Ali Haydarian, Farhad Vakili, Shirin Alam- Houli and Mehdi Eslamian were members of the Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), an offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) . They were charged with membership of a Kurdish “anti-revolutionary” and “moharebe” or waging war against God. Vicky Thompson, Welfare Officer at the University of Manchester Students’ Union posted this on her blog:
“Is it possible to carry the heavy burden of being a teacher and be responsible for spreading the seeds of knowledge and still be silent? Is it possible to see the lumps in the throats of the students and witness their thin and malnourished faces and keep quiet?
Is it possible to be in the year of no justice and fairness and fail to teach the H for Hope and E for Equality, even if such teachings land you in Evin prison or result in your death?”
– Farzad Kamangar, executed 09/05/10, aged just 32.
Kamangar, a Kurdish teacher activist, was executed today alongside four other political prisoners. Kamangar was arrested in 2006 and sentenced to death by hanging in February 2008 after a trial lasting 5 minutes. He had been tortured and had attempted suicide while in prison. When his family last visited him, he was unable even to walk. Kamangar was sentenced to death for the alleged “crimes” of endangering national security and enmity against god. Once again, this brings shame on those on the left who are – or have been – apologists for the Iranian state and its barbaric catalogue of human rights abuses.
Kamangar was executed alongside Ali Haydarian, Farhad Vakili, Shirin Alam-Houli and Mehdi Eslamian. They were all members of the Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), described by the Islamic Republic of Iran as “counter-revolutionary”. It appears that the executions are intended to quell support for anti-regime protests in Iran. Nonetheless, the families and supporters of those killed will be protesting outside Tehran University tomorrow.
“Mr Judge and Interrogator: when you were interrogating me, I couldn’t speak your language and couldn’t understand you. I learned Farsi in the past two years in the women’s section of the prison from my friends. But you interrogated me, tried me and sentenced me in your own language even though I couldn’t understand it and couldn’t defend myself. The torture that you subjected me to has become my nightmare.”
– Shirin Alam-Houli, executed 09/05/10, aged just 28
In a series of reports, the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organisation (CCHFWO) has released the names of seven labor activists who have been arrested in recent days.
On February 27, Fattah Soleimani, a labor activist who is a member of the CCHFWO, was arrested at his home in the Kurdish city of Oshnaviyeh by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence.
Four other members of the CCHFWO, Rahman Ebrahim Zadeh, Hossein Pirvati, Samad Ahmadpour and Rahman Tanha, were also arrested in Oshnaviyeh on February 27, along with another activist Isa Ebrahimzadeh.
On March 2, labor activist Abbas Hashempour was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence in Oshnaviyeh.
Additionally, five other members of the committee have been summoned to criminal and revolutionary courts in Sanandaj.
In a statement posted on its website, the CCHFWO has condemns the arrest of its members and calls for the unconditional release of all labor activists in Iran, including Mansour Osanloo the president of the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company.
کمیته هماهنگی برای کمک به ایجاد تشکل های کارگری اعلام کرده است که شماری از فعالان کارگری و اعضای این تشکل کارگری در شهرهای سنندج، نقده و اشنویه بازداشت، احضار و یا بازجویی شدهاند.
رهانا: این تشکل کارگری در سایت خود شمار بازداشتشدگان را هفت نفر اعلام کرده است.
به گزارش رادیو فردا، صمد احمدپور، عباس هاشمپور، رحمان ابراهیمزاده، رحمان تنها، عیسی ابراهیمزاده، فتاح سلیمانی و حسین پیروتی در روزهای اخیر بازداشت شدهاند.
این تشکل کارگری همچنین اعلام کرده است که فواد شبکیفرد، کاوه گلمحمدی، آزاد منیرنیا و شعیب صابری احضار و یا بازپرسی شدهاند.
کمیته هماهنگی برای کمک به ایجاد تشکلهای کارگری در بیانیهای با اشاره به اینکه فعالیت بازداشتشدگان، تلاش برای احقاق حق طبقه کارگر است، از مقامهای امنیتی و قضایی پرسیده است که آیا انعکاس شرایط نامطلوب کار کارگران و حمایت از آنان جرم است.
فردین نگهدار، از اعضای این تشکل کارگری در تهران، در خصوص این بازداشتها به رادیو فردا میگوید: «این بازداشتها جدا از شرایط جامعه امروز ایران نیست. همزمان با فشار عجیبی که امروز از لحاظ اقتصادی بر طبقه کارگر ایران وارد میشود، فعالان کارگری در تلاش برای انعکاس این فشار و وضعیت زندگی کارگران هستند. اما این فعالان به خاطر همین تلاش خود تحت فشار قرار میگیرند و حتی بازداشت نیز میشوند.»
بازداشت و یا احضار فعالان کارگری تنها محدود به اعضای کمیته هماهنگی برای کمک به ایجاد تشکلهای کارگری نبوده است.
بر اساس گزارشها، غلامرضا خانی و همایون جابری، دو تن از اعضای سندیکای کارگران شرکت واحد اتوبوسرانی تهران و حومه، به دادگاه فراخوانده شده و به دلیل فعالیتهای صنفیشان مورد محاکمه قرار گرفتهاند.
صادق کارگر، فعال سندیکایی در نروژ، در گفتوگو با رادیو فردا بر این باور است که برخوردهای اخیر ناشی از اعتراضهای کارگری و نیز استقبال کارگران مناطق گوناگون از تشکلهای کارگری است.
او با اشاره به تشکیل شورایهای موقت کارگری در ذوب آهن اصفهان میافزاید: «این اقدامات سرآغاز این موضوع است که کارگران در جهت سازماندهی خود پیش میروند و نقش بیشتری در تغییر و تحولات اجتماعی و اقتصادی در ایران و به سود خود ایفا کنند.»
برخوردهای امنیتی و قضایی با فعالان و تشکلهای کارگری در ایران در دوره ریاست جمهوری محمود احمدینژاد شدت گرفته است.
در بیش از چهار سال گذشته، دهها فعال کارگر بازداشت و حتی شماری از آنان محکوم به تحمل شلاق شدهاند.
این برخوردها با اعتراض گسترده سازمانهای بینالمللی کارگری و حقوق بشری مواجه شده است.
با این همه، همچنان شماری از فعالان کارگری مانند منصور اسانلو و ابراهیم مدیی، رئیس و نایب رئیس هیئت مدیره سندیکای شرکت واحد اتوبوسرانی تهران و حومه، علی نجاتی و چند تن دیگر از اعضای هیئت مدیره سندیکای کارگران شرکت نیشکر هفت تپه و محمد اشرفی، از اعضای کمیته هماهنگی برای کمک به ایجاد تشکلهای کارگری، زندانی هستند.
On the morning of Wednesday, January 6th at 4:00am, Fasih Yasamani, a political prisoner, was hanged in Khoy Prison.
According to a report from the Committee of Human Rights Activists in Kurdistan, the execution officials unexpectedly and without following the legal procedure executed this Kurdish citizen who was a native of the village Khoy (located in north-western Iran). He was in prison since 2007. The officials refuse to hand over the body to his family.
Mr. Yasamani was accused of belonging to an opposition party (Pajvak). However, there was no evidence to support the accusations, except for Mr. Yasamani’s own confessions which, according to him, was said under torture.
Fasih was 28 at the time of his execution. After Ehsan Fatahian [who was executed on Nov 11th], Fasih is the second political prisoner to be executed in the Kurdish region in recent months.
At the moment, there are 17 other political prisoners on death row in Kurdistan.
Here are their names:
Ms. Zeynab Jalalian, Habibollah Latifi, Shirkoo Moarefi, Farhad Vakili, Farzad Kamangar, Ali Heydarian, Hossein Khezri, Rashid Akhondaki, Mohammad Amin Agooshi, Ahmad Pouladkhani, Seeyed Sami Hosseini, Seyyed Jamal Mohammadi, Rostam Arkia, Mostafa Salimi, Anvar Rostami, Hasan Talei, and Iraj Mohammadi.
The Iranian authorities have reportedly executed a Kurdish militant whom they charged with being an “enemy of God”. Ehsan Fattahian, 27, was hanged yesterday in the western city of Sanandaj, according to Ali Akbar Gharoussi, head of the judiciary in Kurdistan province.
Ehsan Fattahian’s executioners ignored pleas from international human rights organisations, and petitions signed by many thousands of people, appealing against the death sentence.
Ehsan had admitted membership of the banned Kurdish movement Komeleh, which has a long history of fighting for Kurdish rights and self-determination. He denied involvement in killings, and said he was tortured for three months. His initial 10-year jail sentence was changed to death by a higher court.
Ezzatollah Fattahian, the defendant’s father, told Human Rights Watch that prison officials had prevented the family from visiting his son in prison for the past three months.
Amnesty International, which appealed on Tuesday for Ehsan Fattahian’s life to be spared, has warned that two other Iranian Kurdish men are at risk of execution, and at leastleast 10 other men and one woman are believed to be on death row in connection with membership of and activities in support of proscribed Kurdish organizations.
Oppositionists say the Iranian regime is using incidents like last month’s explosion in Baluchistan, in which 41 people including senior Revolutionary Guard officers were killed, to come down hard on minorities. A Baluchi group called Jundullah claimed responsibility for the attack. The regime accused US, British and Israeli intelligence agencies of supporting separatists.
“The Iranian regime is trying to intimidate ethnic minorities from joining the Green Wave,” Komeleh leader Abdullah Mohtadi told al-Arabiyya TV, referring to the movement led by Mir Hossein Mousavi, who claims to have beaten Ahmadinejad in the elections. “One of the methods to deter people is stricter sentencing in ethnic provinces such as Kurdistan, Baluchestan and Ahwaz.”
The Komaleh, and Kurdish aspirations, go back much further than the present Iranian regime and its troubles at home or abroad. Like neighbouring Iraq and Turkey, Iran has a chunk of Kurdish lands, with around four million Kurdish people. Sanandaj, the capital of Iran- Kurdistan province, is in an area where Kurdish guerrillas have clashed with Iranian security forces. In September there were a number of attacks, often targetting religious leaders and judges. No group claimed responsibility. The authorities variously blamed a Kurdish Independent Life Party and “hard-line Sunni fundamentalists” linked with outside powers. But Komaleh is a secular organisation, which some even see as Marxist.
Amnesty International condemned the September killings, but opposed the use of the death penalty against political prisoners. Amnesty lists Iran as the world’s second most prolific executioner in 2008 after China, and says it put to death at least 346 people last year.
Ehsan Fattahian was detained on 20 July 2008 and said in a letter smuggled from prison that he was regularly beaten in detention. Branch 1 of the Revolutionary Court in Sanandaj sentenced him to ten years imprisonment, to be served in exile, after a trial in which he was denied access to a lawyer. Both Ehsan and the prosecutor appealed this verdict, and in January this year the Appeal Court overturned the first sentence. Instead he was sentenced to death for “emnity to God”. He said the new sentence was passed because he refused to confess, or to renounce his beliefs.
Here are the concluding paragraphs of Ehsan Fattahian’s letter from the condemned cell:
“… shortly before my sentence was changed to the death sentence, I was taken from Sanandaj prison to the Intelligence Ministry’s detention center, where I was asked to make a false confession on camera, show remorse for the actions I had not committed and reject my beliefs. I did not give in to their illegitimate demands, so I was told that my prison sentence would be changed to the death sentence. They were fast to keep their promise and prove to me how courts always concede to the demands of intelligence and non-judicial authorities. How can one criticize the courts then?
All judges take an oath to remain impartial at all times and in all cases, to rule according to the law and nothing but the law. How many of the judges of this country can say that they have not broken their oath and have remained fair and impartial? In my opinion the number is countable with the fingers on my hand. When the entire justice system in Iran orders arrests, trials, imprisonments and death sentences with the simple hand gesture of an uneducated interrogator, what is to be expected from a few minor judges in a province that has always been discriminated against? Yes, in my view, it is the foundation of the house which is in ruins.
Last time I met in prison with the prosecutor who had issued the initial indictment, he admitted that the ruling was illegal. Yet, for the second time, it has been ruled that my execution should be carried out. It goes without saying that the insistence to carry out the execution at any cost is a result of pressures exercised by political and intelligence groups outside the Judiciary. People who are part of these groups look at the question of life and death of a prisoner only based on their own political and financial interests. They cannot see anything but their own illegitimate objectives, even when it is the question of a person’s right to life – the most basic of all human rights. How pointless is it to expect them to respect international treaties when they don’t even respect their own laws?
Last word: if the rulers and oppressors think that, with my death, the Kurdish question will go away, they are wrong. My death and the deaths of thousands of others like me will not cure the pain; they will only add to the flames of this fire. There is no doubt that every death is the beginning of a new life.