Iran

With some delay we received this report on activities in Iran on May Day. Our readers will see that there was a sizeable level of activity on the day, but most importantly that the key issue of the role of the working class is being discussed widely among activists and workers and youth in general.

The first day of spring marks the beginning of the Iranian New Year, which is celebrated with bonfires, fireworks and dancing in the streets. This year, however, there was something new in the celebrations. The masses used the celebrations to express openly their hatred of the Islamic regime, in spite of attempt by the police to stop this.

On February 11 the masses attempted to organise anti-government protests. This time the regime prepared systematically, learning from previous days of protest. This has brought out some of the limitations of the movement, but the masses are learning from each experience. They require greater organisation and leadership, and most importantly the active intervention of the working class.

In order to harass left activists, members of the Worker-Communist Party of Iran-Hekmatist, the Iranian regime’s “courts” have declared 12 members of this party as common criminals. Scandalously, INTERPOL has accepted this verdict as valid and has put these left activists on its “wanted list”.

Recent events in Iran have highlighted the fact that the movement that erupted back in June was not a one off sporadic event. It marked the beginning of a revolutionary process that will not stop until this hated regime is brought down. There are ups and downs, but the direction is clear. What the mass movement now requires is the decisive intervention of the organised working class. That is what the Marxists insist on in this situation.

Over the last few days, mass demonstrations have erupted again in Iran. Millions are on the streets and there are reports of the people taking control of the streets, burning down police stations and even of police refusing to fire on demonstrators. These could be the last days of the hated IRI regime. If a revolutionary leadership were present, the hours of the Islamic Republic would be counted. We publish this article with lots of eyewitness reports from the ground.

“Student’s Day” on 7 December was used by the Iranian opposition to stage a huge anti-government protest, which turned out to be the most aggressive day of protests since they began in June. Hundreds of thousands of people joined the students on the streets. The further escalation of protests and clashes with the police and Basij has confirmed our analysis that this is the beginning of a revolution.

Mansour Osanloo, the leader of the Steering Committee of the Trade Union of the Vahed Bus Company of Tehran and Suburbs, has been sacked from work.

On Monday December 7, 2009, Pedram Nasrollahi, a labour movement and women’s movement activist, was released on 30 million tomans ($30,369) bail. Pedram Nasrollahi was arrested by the security force on Thursday, November 12, 2009, at 5:40pm, while returning [home] from work. He was detained in Sanandaj’s Ferdowsi Street, and after a beating was held in the city prison’s quarantine.

Iranian president Ahmadinejad recently visited Brazil. Some on the left erroneously have developed illusions that somehow his regime should be supported because of its “anti-imperialism”. Here we publish a statement of the comrades of Esquerda Marxista, where they explain that Ahmadinejad is no friend of the working class.

According to the latest news, at 2pm today, Tuesday December 1 2009, Farzad Ahmadi, a labour activist and tailor, was released from Sanandaj prison on a bail of 30 million tomans ($30,369). While we congratulate all activists of the class struggle on the release of this dear comrade, we condemn the detention of Pedram Nasrollahi and demand the unconditional release of this labour activist.

Last week's visit of the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ahmadinejad to Bolivia has unleashed the hysteria of the reactionary media in the country and abroad. The idea has been promoted that the Iranian regime is in some way “anti-imperialist”, “revolutionary”, and that the foreign policy of the Bolivian revolution must be guided by the principle of “multi-polarity”, or to put it clearly, the principle that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”. Here we publish a statement by the Marxist Tendency in Bolivia, analysing the real character of the Iranian regime.

The following is a statement issued by Iranian Workers’ Solidarity Network activists in Sanandaj (in the Iranian province of Kurdistan) on the recent arrest of Farzad Ahmadi, a labour activist.

Two labour activists in Kurdistan were recently arrested for the 'crime' of defending workers' rights, attending workers' meetings and not caving in to the Iranian regime's threats. Pedram Nasrollahi and Farzad Ahmadi have the support of dozens of workers in Sanandaj and other parts of Iranian Kurdistan. [Updated list of supporters: 30 Nov.]

The following is a statement issued by Iranian Workers’ Solidarity Network activists in Sanandaj on the recent arrest of Pedram Nasrollahi, a Kurdish labour activist. Pedram was released on bail earlier this year (April 6 2009) from prison in Sanandaj, the capital of the Iranian province of Kurdistan.