Press release – Protesters arrested in Iran need international support

8th January 2018

For immediate use

The longest standing UK-based solidarity organisation with the people of Iran, the Committee for the Defence of Iranian People’s Rights (CODIR), has today condemned the arrests of students and working class activists following recent protests in the Islamic Republic.

CODIR, which has enjoyed widespread support within the labour and trade union movement for over three decades, is calling upon trade unions in the UK and across the world to back the protests and condemn the crackdown by the Iranian authorities.

Over 2000 people have been arrested by the authorities in Iran, including an estimated 100 university students who have been particularly targeted by the regime.  Hundreds more have been injured and at least twenty reported killed by security forces.  The Islamic Republic has a history of using physical and psychological torture on prisoners, including sensory deprivation techniques, as a means to extract false confessions, which are then used for propaganda purposes by the regime.

CODIR fears that those arrested in the current crackdown will face the fate of many political and trade union activists before them if voices are not raised in the international community to come to their aid.

“These protests are clearly the result of the frustration felt by the ordinary people of Iran, especially youth from working class communities, faced with crippling economic sanctions, unemployment,  a mismanaged economy and daily human rights abuses,” said CODIR Assistant Secretary, Jamshid Ahmadi today.  “For nearly forty years the Iranian people have suffered under a theocratic dictatorship and the cracks are now beginning to show.  The people of Iran need our support now more urgently than ever and messages of solidarity are one way in which we can show that support.”

CODIR is concerned that sections of the labour and trade union movement are not voicing support for the people of Iran due to the confusing response to the situation from the Trump administration. US expressions of concern are purely aimed at destabilizing the regime with the aim of increasing US influence in line with the strategic objectives of the Israeli leadership in respect of Iran. They do not have legitimacy. The fate of the regime will ultimately be decided by Iranians.

However, today, NOW, the Iranian working class, women and students need international solidarity. CODIR calls on all its friends and supporters of democratic rights and justice to give their support to the Iranian people and their democratic organisations.

“It is clear”, continued Mr Ahmadi, “that the  Iranian regime is living on borrowed time and has no answer to the impoverishment of the country other than repression and bankrupt dictatorial policies.

CODIR specifically calls on the trade unions and peace and human rights organisations to write letters of protest to the Iranian authorities directly or via the Embassies and Diplomatic Missions of the Islamic Republic of Iran in their countries.



Contact Information for CODIR:-

Postal Address:


Further information on CODIR

CODIR is the Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People’s Rights.  It has been established since 1981 and has consistently campaigned to expose human rights abuses in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

CODIR has worked closely with the trade union movement in the UK and globally, the peace movement, all major political parties and Amnesty International to press the case for an end to torture in Iran’s prisons.

CODIR has published Iran Today, its quarterly journal, since 1981, explaining the latest developments in Iran and the most effective way that the British public opinion could demonstrate its solidarity with the people of Iran.



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