ITF letter to Hassan Rouhani on Reza Shahabi

November 2nd, 2013

Dear President Hassan Rouhani,

The ITF wishes, once again, to raise with you the urgent matter of imprisoned trade unionist Reza Shahabi, the Treasurer of the ITF-affiliated Tehran Bus Drivers’ Union the Vahed Syndicate.  That urgency comes not only from his well-known and continuing health problems, but also because of an unexpected judicial decision that could result in him spending an extra year in jail.

Both of these facts are wholly unacceptable and demand action to remedy them.  The release of Reza Shahabi and others who have been unjustly imprisoned is the only acceptable form of remedial action.  Such action is clearly within your power.

It is deeply disappointing that we have to once again raise this matter.  Your election to the post of President created hopes of change in Iran.  Such change is only achievable when the rights of workers are upheld.  So far there has been no evidence of this taking place.  We therefore ask you now to address this grave lack of justice.

Yours faithfully,

Stephen Cotton

ITF Acting general secretary

ITF welcomes Shahabi release, but remains watchful

January 8th, 2013

Reza Shahabi

8 January 2013

The ITF has welcomed the provisional five day release of sick Iranian prisoner Reza Shahabi, treasurer of the ITF’s affiliate the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company.
 
Following a three-week protest hunger strike, Shahabi was released yesterday on the grounds of his deteriorating medical condition. His condition had gone downhill since he underwent surgery to his neck and spine. Shahabi has been incarcerated for over two and a half years and it is possible he will be returned to prison after undergoing treatment. On his return home he called off his hunger strike.

“We are delighted that Reza Shahabi can finally get the treatment doctors recommend”, said general secretary David Cockroft. “Charges against him have not been dropped however – so ITF unions globally remain watchful.”

“This is good news for human rights and will be welcomed everywhere – the next step would be for Shahabi together with other trade union prisoners in Iran, to be cleared of wrongdoing” said ITF president Paddy Crumlin.

Source: http://www.itfglobal.org/press-area/index.cfm/pressdetail/8332

New police pressure on IUF Iran affiliate

July 29th, 2012

26-07-2012

Leaders of the IUF-affiliated independent Haft Tapeh sugarworkers union in Iran have come under renewed police pressure as part of the regime’s escalating crackdown on trade union activists.

Act now! – click here to send a message to the Iranian authorities.

Over the past 2 months, members of the union’s collective leadership council have been repeatedly contacted by security agents and pressured to dissolve the organization and sign letters renouncing union activity in return for reinstatement to their former positions. Former union president Ali Nejati, who began serving a one year prison sentence for his union activity last November and is currently on medical furlough for heart surgery, has been threatened with imminent return to Dezful prison despite his condition, which doctors say is serious. Prior to his imprisonment last year Najati previously served 6 months in prison on the same charges and was then fired from his job which he had held for 25 years. Some – but not all – Haft Tapeh leaders who served time in prison have been reemployed on inferior terms at Haft Tapeh, but on temporary contracts which leave them vulnerable to instant dismissal.

The union was founded in June 2008 following a 42-day strike to demand long-standing arrears. Since the union’s founding, leaders and activists have repeatedly been jailed and harassed, and workers at the giant sugar cane plantation and refinery have repeatedly had to resort to strikes and other actions to claim huge wage arrears and protest deteriorating working conditions.

Other independent trade unions and labour rights organizations in Iran report similar pressure from security agents to dissolve their organizations.

These worker rights defenders need international solidarity and support – click here to send a message to the Iranian authorities demanding that all charges against Ali Nejati be immediately and unconditionally annulled, that the stricken union leader be given all necessary medical attention and that union leaders and members are allowed to conduct their union activity free from harassment and persecution.

Please note that some messages may bounce back – do not be discouraged! Server overload is a common condition in Iran, and the authorities sometimes turn off their e-mail to tune out public opinion – but some messages will get through, making the point that persecuted labour rights activists enjoy international support.

Massive clampdown on Iranian labour activists

June 22nd, 2012

On Friday 15th June 60 labour activists and worker rights advocates were arrested by heavily armed police at a peaceful meeting of the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organizations in the city of Karaj. Within 24 hours, according to the most recent information, most had been released but nine remain in the custody of the intelligence services in Rasht: Cyrus Fathi, Alireza Asqari, Jalil Mohammadi, Saeed Marzban, Masood Salim Pour, Maziar Mehrpour, Reyhaneh Ansari, Faramarz Fetrat Nejad and Mitra Homayouni.

There is good reason to fear for the physical and psychological integrity of those still in detention.

These rights defenders need international solidarity and support. Send your protest message to the Iranian authorities demanding their immediate and unconditional release today!

*****

ما نگرانی عمیق از دستگیری 60 تن از فعالین کارگری و اعضای کمیته هماهنگی در روز 15 خرداد که در نشستی مسالمت آمیز برای کمک به حل معضلات کارگران گردهم آمده بودند ؛ را اعلام می داریم

با توجه به اطلاعات ما دست کم 9 تن از دستگیرشدگان ( کوروش فتحی , علیرضا عسگری , جلیل محمدی , سعید مرزبان , مسعود سلیم پور , مازیار مهرپور , ریحانه انصاری , فرامرز فطرت نژاد ) همچنان در بازداشت به سر می برند  که نگرانی خود را از وضعیت و سلامت ایشان اعلام می داریم. ما خواهان آزادی فوری و بدون قید و شرط آنها هستیم

برای امضا پتیشن از اینجا وارد شوید

*Please note that some messages may bounce back – do not be discouraged! Server overload is a common condition in Iran, and the authorities sometimes turn off their e-mail to tune out public opinion – but some messages will get through, making the point that persecuted labour rights activists enjoy international support.

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Mahmoud Saleh and 59 activists arrested

June 16th, 2012

On Friday 15th June at noon, 60 members of the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organizations and a number of labour activists were arrested by agents of Karaj city.

According to the latest news, Mitra Homayooni, Vafa Ghaderi, Reyhaneh Ansari, Khaled Hosseini, Mahmoud Salehi, Saeed Moghaddam, Cyrus Fathi, Ghaleb Hosseini, Mohammad Abdipour, Jalal Hosseini, Alireza Asgari, Masoud Salimpour, Abbas Andriyany, Sediq Amjadi, Fattah Soleimani, Maziar Mehrpour, Mhommad Molanai, Vahed Seyyedeh, Jalil Sharifian, Sediq Khosravi, Yusuf Ab Kharabad, Faramarz Fetrat Nejad, Jalil Mohammadi, Nezam Sadeghi, Afshin Nadimi, Hussain Pilooti, Rahman Ebrahim Zadeh, Abbas Hashem Poor are among the detainees. (If new names appear, they will be added to the list).

The detainees were transferred to Rajai Shahr prison in Karaj and until now no further news is available.

We, members of the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organizations, condemn the arrest of the members and other workers activists. We demand the immediate release of all workers activist. We expect all workers activists and organizations to protest against these arrestments. Further news will be announced later.

Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ organizations

UPDATE: As of 16 June, nine still remain in the custody of the intelligence office. Others including Salehi have been released. They are believed to be:- Cyrus Fathi, Alireza Asqari, Jalil Mohammadi, Saeed Marzban, Masood Salim Pour, Maziar Mehrpour, Reyhaneh Ansari, Faramarz Fetrat Nejad and Mitra Homayouni.

URGENT ACTION: Reza Shahabi given 6 years sentence

May 14th, 2012

URGENT ACTION for Reza Shahabi and Zabihollah Bagheri
TRADE UNIONIST GIVEN SIX-YEAR PRISON SENTENCE

Iranian trade unionist Reza Shahabi has been sentenced to six years ‘ imprisonment on vaguely worded charges . He is in poor health, and it is not clear whether he is receiving all necessary medical treatment. Another trade unionist is missing after being arrested. Read the rest of this entry »

ITF: Long overdue release of Ebrahim Madadi from imprisonment in Iran

April 19th, 2012

19 April 2012

The ITF has learnt that Ebrahim Madadi, vice-president of the ITF-affiliated Syndicate of Workers of the Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, has been released from imprisonment.

First arrested in August 2007 and released in December 2007, Madadi was again detained in December 2008. Set free in December 2011 he was rearrested a short while later. He was accused of putting national security at risk. Read the rest of this entry »

Stop the execution of Abdolreza Ghanbari – Send your message

March 7th, 2012

Abdolreza Ghanbari, a 44-year-old lecturer of Payam e Nour University, was arrested at his home in Pakdasht on 4 January 2010. He was charged with Moharebeh (enmity towards God) for receiving unsolicited emails from an armed opposition group, to which he does not belong. Read the rest of this entry »

ITF pushes for Madadi and Shahabi release

February 28th, 2012

28 February 2012

The ITF has told Ayatollah Khamenei that the approach of the Iranian New Year provides an ideal time to release Ebrahim Madadi and Reza Shahabi.

In a letter to Ayatollah Sayed Ali Khamenei, ITF general secretary David Cockroft stated: Read the rest of this entry »

Ebrahim Madadi Re-Arrested Today

December 7th, 2011

7 December 2011

The ITUC was dismayed and incensed to hear today that Ebrahim Madadi, a courageous trade unionist and Comrade from Vahed Syndicate in Tehran, was re-arrested today after being freed only last Thursday. A move welcomed by the international trade union movement Read the rest of this entry »

Imprisoned trade unionist Ebrahim Madadi is freed

November 30th, 2011

ITUC/ITF Joint press release

30 November 2011
The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) are welcoming the release today from prison of Ebrahim Madadi, a board member of the Tehran bus drivers’ union, the Vahed Syndicate. Ebrahim had been unjustly held on false charges of endangering national security since being arrested and then rearrested in 2007 and 2008. Read the rest of this entry »

Reza Shahabi, returned to jail, begins hunger strike

November 29th, 2011

29 November 2011

The situation of Reza Shahabi has deteriorated in the last few days. Last week protests at his being returned to jail from hospital appeared to have borne fruit: he was allowed back to hospital. But that progress has now been reversed, and he is believed to have once again been sent to Evin Prison, where as of Tuesday 22nd November he has begun a hunger strike in protest. His family have been refused access to him since 20th November, and have received no news about his state of health. Read the rest of this entry »