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Dozens of workers and labor activists arrested on May Day

Labor activists arrested arrested at May Day gathering in TehranIran-HRM, May 1, 2021: Dozens of Iranian workers and labor activists were arrested today in rallies marking International Labor Day in Tehran.

Labor rights activists Asal MohammadiHirad Pirbodaghi, Saeed Malayeri, are among those arrested outside the regime’s Labor Ministry.

Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company has also confirmed the arrest of “dozens” of its members including Reza Shahabi, Hassan Saeedi, Vahid Fereidooni, Nasser Moharramzadeh, Seyyed Rasoul Talebmoghaddam, Mohammad Ali Aslaghi and Asdollah Soleymani.

The number of detainees is estimated at more than 30, however, a number of them were released minutes after their arrest.

From the early hours of this morning, authorities dispatched a large number of security forces and anti-riot units outside the Labor Ministry to prevent a gathering marking International Labor Day.

Locals reported similar scenes in other areas of the Iranian capital.

According to an informed source, “before the gathering, security forces were present at the scene and tried to prevent the independent workers’ gathering. In fact, they tried to turn the Labor Day rally into a government ceremony that began with the recitation of the Qur’an and the playing of the anthem of the Iranian regime, and was dedicated to praising the current situation of the workers and the actions of the regime.”

The Free Union of Iranian Workers reported today that Seth Amani, one of its members, was also arrested along with several others during a Labor Day ceremony in Sanandaj, western Iran.

Despite the heavy presence of security forces, especially in Tehran, and many employees and workers being told they would be suspended or fired if they did not go to work, workers held organized protests in several cities in Iran including Isfahan, Tabriz, Sari, Qazvin, Arak, Kermanshah, Ahvaz, Shush, Yazd, Sanandaj, Karaj.

Participants chanted several slogans such as, “We’ve heard so many lies, but not seen our paychecks/pensions!”, “our enemy is right here! They lie in saying its America!”, “We’re no longer voting after hearing so many lies!”, “down with the oppressors, long live workers!”, “a nation has never seen this much injustice!”, “enough empty promises! our dining tables are empty!”.