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Iranian regime court sentences 15 protesting workers to flogging

15 HEPCO construction company workers centenced to imprisonment for protesting
15 HEPCO construction company workers centenced to imprisonment for protesting

Reported by PMOI/MEK

 

Iran, Oct. 29, 2018 - The judiciary of the Iranian regime in Arak has sentenced 15 workers of the HEPCO construction company to a five-year suspended sentence of 1-2 years in prison and 74 lashes. The sentence, which was given under trumped up charges of “disrupting public order,” was meant to intimidate the hundreds of workers of HEPCO who have been protesting for months against deteriorating working conditions and unpaid wages.

The Labor Commission of the National Council of Resistance of Iran promptly condemned this inhuman sentence and the punishment of Iran’s workers. The NCRI stipulated: “The judiciary of the mullahs is telling the workers, whose only sin is to demand payment for their toil, that if in the next five years, they dare do anything wrong, they will be subjected to such punishments, and they should give in to their working conditions, which means not getting paid for their labor.”

The Labor Commission of the NCRI called on all Iranian workers to continue their protests and uprisings against the tyranny of the mullahs’ regime. The Council also called on international labor associations, workers’ unions and human rights organizations to support the workers of Iran in their efforts to reclaim their rights and to pressurize the regime to drop the inhuman sentence and to abolish executions.

 

83 percent of workers in Iran are under the line of death

In June, the state-run Tasnim News Agency published a report about the deteriorating living conditions of workers in Iran. The report states that 83 percent of Iranian workers are living under the line of “death.”

Quoting the representative of Iranian workers in the Iranian regime’s Supreme Labor Council, the report writes: “By stating that 83 percent of workers are living under the line of ‘death,’ we foresee that by August, we’ll face an inflation of production over consumption.”

The report also stated: “In the past three months, the prices of food and other necessary items has increased so much that we seldom see anyone who isn’t unsatisfied with the situation. Meanwhile, workers are the class of the society that is feeling the hardships more than others, which is a concerning situation. The increase of housing and rent prices, the increasing value of the dollar, coins, gold, poultry, bananas, meat, rice, cooking oil and… all of these indicate that the table of families, especially workers, will diminish in the coming year. The continued upward trend of prices in the market predicts that in the second half of the current year, the people will be even harder pressed to supply their families.”

 

The effect of rising prices on the lives of workers

In an interview with Tasnim, Faramarz Tofiqi, who is the supposed representative of workers in the regime’s Supreme Labor Council, said: “One of the topics that labor representatives often discuss is that every year, the base salary of workers is specified according to the inflation rates of the previous year. This means that we make decisions for the coming year base on the inflation rates of the previous year.”

Tofiqi said, “The government must solve economic problems through correct planning. For instance, should the people control this huge amount of financial circulation? No, it’s the government that should plan and controls the liquidity.”

According to Tofiqi, as the purchasing power of the people diminishes, producers will find no customers for their goods. Meanwhile, people’s lives will continue to plunge into poverty and they won’t be able to buy their most basic needs with the meager salaries they earn. “The sudden spike in prices… shows that government officials have abandoned the people,” Tofiqi said.

By admitting that 83 percent of workers are living under the line of “death,” Faramarz Tofiqi warned, “This sudden uncontrolled spike in prices is leading toward circumstances where workers living under the line of death will no longer be able to tolerate the situation. Government officials have abandoned the country.”

 

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