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Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People's Rights

Justice For Iranian Workers
Feministi School
Coup against Dr.Mossadegh
Iran: Attacks on Workers' Rights Escalating

The ITUC has expressed alarm at increased repression of workers' rights in Iran over the past several months.

On 15 September, retired and former president of the Haft Tapeh Sugar Company Workers' Syndicate, Ali Nejati, was arrested after the police raided his home. The next day Mahmoud Salehi, a founding member Bakery Workers' Union in the city of Saqez (Kurdistan Province) who was arrested on 28 April, was sentenced to nine years imprisonment. ...more

Statement on the death in custody of Shahrokh Zamani in Iran

The Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People's Rights (CODIR) has demanded a full and independent investigation into the circumstances of the tragic death in custody of Shahrokh Zamani, Iranian labour activist, at Rajai Shahr Prison. Zamani was active in Iran's labour movement, helping to facilitate the establishment of independent workers' associations. He belonged to a committee that oversaw the creation of workers' groups and was a member of Iran's Building Painters and Decorators Syndicate. He was arrested in Tabriz on 4th June 2011 on charges of "propaganda against the regime", "insulting the Supreme Leader" and "helping to establish groups that undermined national security." ...more

IRAN TODAY Vol. 27, No.2, Autumn 2015 is published.

In this issue:

- Editorial: 5+1=Hypocrisy Page 2

- Iran's government does not recognise trade union by Habib Mehrzad, CODIR's Co-ordinator in Canada Page 3

- IRAN's TEACHERS FIGHT FOR THE FUTURE OF EDUCATION by Dr. Liz Payne investigares for Iran Today Page 4,5

- Cutting through the nuclear smokescreen by Jane Green page 6,7

- Time for action on the domestic front Page 8

- Rouhani and Minorities In Iran Page 9

- Women's Rights under Rouhani - No Progress by Linda Sherwood Page 10



Mohammad Ali Taheri has been sentenced to death in Iran for "spreading corruption on earth" through his spiritual beliefs and teachings. He is a prisoner of conscience. Mohammad Ali Taheri received a death sentence on 1 August for "spreading corruption on earth" (efsad-e fel arz) by establishing a new spiritual group called Erfan-e Halgheh. He had been tried before Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court in two sessions, on 11 March and 29 April. He has until 20 August to appeal, which he intends to do. Amnesty International understands that Mohammad Ali Taheri's death sentence for the charge of "spreading corruption on earth" is based on the same spiritual teachings and practices which were relied upon in October 2011 to convict him of several offences, including "insulting Islamic sanctities", and sentence him to five years' imprisonment, 74 lashes and a fine of nine billion rials (US$300,000). Mohammad Ali Taheri has been since serving this prison sentence in solitary confinement in Section 2A of Tehran's Evin Prison, which is run by the Revolutionary Guards. ...more


Iranian human rights defender Narges Mohammadi, imprisoned since 5 May, was taken to hospital on 1 August suffering from partial paralysis. She is being denied the specialized treatment she needs, and is facing charges based on her human rights activities. She is a prisoner of conscience. Narges Mohammadi was taken from Tehran's Evin Prison to the city's Taleghani Hospital on 1 August, she had suffered partial paralysis for eight hours that day. Doctors at the hospital advised her that she needed to be examined by a specialist in order to be treated. Despite this medical recommendation, she was returned to Evin Prison the next day without receiving specialized care. Narges Mohammadi's husband, Taghi Rahmani, a refugee in Paris, France, has said that Narges Mohammadi was also taken to hospital on 27 July after complaining of lung pains. He said the doctor advised that Narges Mohammadi needed to be hospitalized for treatment of a possible pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in her lungs), but she was returned to prison without receiving adequate care. The next day, prison officials refused to take her to an appointment with a neurologist for her medical history of partial paralysis. ...more

Unison calls for the Release of Ismail Abdi, Secretary General of Iran's Teachers' Trade Association

We ask you to convey our concerns to your government and call on them to release Ismail Abdi immediately and unconditionally and drop all charges against him. In the event that he is not released we request that he is granted regular access to an independent lawyer of his own choosing. I understand that Ismail Abdi was arrested on 27 June for allegedly "organising and participating in illegal gatherings", after he enquired at the prosecutor's office at Evin Prison about a travel ban placed upon him. He had been prevented from travelling to Armenia to apply for a visa to attend the World Congress of Education International, the global teachers' union, in Ottawa, Canada in July 2015. ...more

Britain Union of Teachers Demands Abdi's Freedom


News has reached us in recent days of the re-arrest and detention of the General Secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Association, Mr Esmail Abdi as a result of his legitimate trade union activities. I write on behalf of National Union of Teachers to express our grave concern at the treatment of Mr Abdi - his arrest and the nature of the allegations against him. According to reports that we have received, Mr Abdi was taken into custody on 27 June after he had been prevented from traveling to Armenia to obtain a travel visa to participate in Education International's (EI) 7th World Congress in Ottawa, Canada, from 21 - 26 July. We have also learned that after Mr. Abdi's passport had been confiscated at the border, he was instructed to return to Tehran to meet with the prosecutors' office. After having reported to the prosecutors' office he was arrested. ...more

Canadian Teachers' Union Calls for Abdi's Release

I am writing on behalf of the Canadian Teachers' Federation, the voice of nearly 200,000 teachers in Canada and an Affiliate Member of the 30-million member Education International (EI). As one of the host organizations of EI's 7th World Congress, the CTF echoes EI's call to release immediately our colleague Mr. Esmail Abdi, the General Secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Trade Association (ITTA) and to secure his right to travel to Canada to attend the Congress in Ottawa, Canada, July 21-26, 2015. ...more

Global Education Union Calls for Abdi's to be Released

I am writing to you on behalf of Education International (EI), the global federation of education unions and teachers' associations representing more than 32 million educators and education support professionals in 170 countries. We urge you to immediately release Mr Esmail Abdi, the General Secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Trade Association (ITTA). ...more

Iranian teacher union leader jailed

Esmail Abdi, the general secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Trade Association, was arrested following his attempt to obtain a visa to attend the 7th Education International World Congress in Ottawa, Canada later this month. According to reports, Iranian Teachers' Trade Association (ITTA) General Secretary Esmail Abdi was taken into custody on June 27 after he was prevented from traveling to Armenia to obtain a travel visa for Canada. Abdi intended on participating in Education International's (EI) 7th World Congress in Ottawa from 21 to 26 July. The ITTA is an affiliate of EI.

EI General Secretary demands Iranian government to release Abdi

"Preventing Esmail Abdi to leave the country to attend EI's 7th World Congress is a serious violation of human rights standards,” said EI General Secretary Fred van Leeuwen. “There is no excuse for placing him under arrest. This is unacceptable. We are contacting the Iranian authorities demanding his immediate release. We are also requesting the heads of ILO and UNESCO to intervene."


Defend the rights of teachers in Iran

The Committee for Defence of the Iranian People's Rights (CODIR) has today condemned the detention of Ismail Abdi, General Secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Association (teachers' union). Abdi was detained on 21 June, while attempting to pass through the border crossing into Armenia. Officers at the border prevented him from leaving the country and confiscated his passport. Abdi was travelling through Armenia on his way to visit Canada to participate in the annual Education International Annual Conference. Instead he was asked to report to Evin prison. Mr Abdi has been in trouble with the authorities of the Islamic Republic over the protest by Iranian teachers demanding better salaries, improved conditions of service and job security. Nearly 70 teachers accompanied Mr Abdi when he attended the session to answer questions by the authorities. They were worried that the authorities may attempt to arrest him, fears which turned out to be justified. ...more

Solidarity group calls for support for sacked journalists

Journalists in Iran have been sacked for reporting on labour disputes in the country, according to evidence revealed today by the Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People's Rights (CODIR). ILNA (Iran's Labour News Agency) is the only news agency authorised by the Islamic Republic of Iran to provide limited coverage of labour related news and developments. Until recently it had been allowed to provide limited coverage of labour related news and developments. However, on 20th June, the entire ILNA labour affairs group were sacked on the spot by Chief Executive, Massoud Heydari. Preceding the mass sacking the web site of ILNA had stopped covering labour news for 2 days. There has been no official statement by ILNA for this decision. ...more

Iran power struggle could derail nuclear deal

Diplomats issue warning amid concerns over health of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who would need to ratify any deal.

There are mounting fears that a deepening power struggle in Tehran over the succession for the powerful position of Supreme Leader could derail attempts to negotiate a deal over Iran's nuclear programme. Western diplomats involved in the negotiations believe the increasingly frail health of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the regime's current Supreme Leader, has prompted a fierce power struggle between rival contenders as they jostle for the succession. ...more


Iranian prisoner of conscience Atena Farghadani has been sentenced to more than a decade in prison for her art and peaceful activism. She now has 20 days to appeal. Atena Farghadani, a 29-year-old painter and activist, was sentenced on 1 June to 12 years and nine months in prison, on charges of "gathering and colluding against national security", "insulting members of parliament through paintings", "spreading propaganda against the system", "insulting the President" and "insulting the Iranian Supreme Leader". The charges stem from her peaceful activities, including her association with families of political prisoners, her anti-government posts on Facebook and her artwork. She held an art exhibition in memory of those killed in the crackdown that followed the contested 2009 presidential election, and drew a cartoon that satirized parliament's efforts to pass a bill that criminalizes voluntary sterilization and restricts access to contraception and family planning services. ...more


Anti-death penalty activist Atena Daemi has been sentenced to 14 years in prison for her peaceful activism. She has been held in Tehran's Evin Prison since October 2014, when she was arrested. She is a prisoner of conscience. Atena Daemi, a 27-year-old anti-death penalty and civil society activist, was sentenced to 14 years in prison on 12 May by Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court of Tehran after a grossly unfair trial. The trial apparently lasted no more than 15 minutes and took place at the same time as the trial of three others. She was convicted of "gathering and colluding against national security", "spreading propaganda against the system", "insulting the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Supreme Leader" and concealing evidence. ...more

Iran Today, Vol. 27, No.2, Autumn 2015
CODIR Bulletin March 2015
Iran Today, Vol. 26, No.2, Autumn 2014
CODIR Bulletin May 2014
CODIR Bulletin March 2014
CODIR Bulletin September 2013
CODIR Bulletin May 2013
CODIR Bulletin March/April 2013
Iran Today Sep 2012
Iran Today Sep 2011
Iran Today Vol21 No2
Iran Today Vol21 No1
Iran Today Vol2 No1
Iran Today Vol2 No2

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