Sunday, August 24, 2008

Molly has reported on this solidarity campaign in support of imprisoned Iranian union activists before, but the situation is more serious than originally reported. Here is the original report from the Labour Start online solidarity site.


Act NOW!
Iran: Protest intensified repression against labour activists - No to whippings and executions!

Repression against labour activists in Iran is intensifying. In recent weeks, there have been numerous cases of arrests and jailings. Most shocking perhaps was the sentencing of two women labour activists (Sousan Razani and Shiva Kheirabadi, pictured) to 15 lashes and four months in prison -- for the "crime" of participating in a May Day celebration.

Additional cases which concern us include:

Mr. Abdullah Khani, 40 lashes and 91 days in prison
Mr. Seyed Qaleb Hosseini, 50 lashes and 6 months in prison
Mr. Khaled Hosseini, 30 lashes and suspended prison sentence
Mr. Farzad Kamangar, a Kurdish teacher, sentenced to death
Mr. Afshin Shams, arrested
Mr. Mansour Osanloo, leader of Tehran's bus workers, in prison since July 2007

We call on the Iranian government to immediately release these prisoners and to cease all repression of labour activists.
Here is the update along with the contact page for this campaign.

A few days ago I wrote to tell you about the increased repression
directed against Iranian labour activists.

I told you about the case of two women in particular, Sousan Razani
and Shiva Kheirabadi, who have been sentenced to jail terms and
whipping for the "crime" of having participated in a May Day
demonstration this year.

I told you that Sousan was sentenced to receive 15 lashes and 4
months in prison.

We have now received the shocking news that it is actually worse than

Sousan has been ordered to receive 9 months in prison and 70 lashes.

In the last few days we have received photographs of Sousan and
Shiva. I wish that every trade unionist, every person who cares about
human rights, could look at those photographs today. You can see them
on our campaign page:

The campaign that we launched is now running in an unprecedented ten
languages, with more to come. And so far, 3,448 people have sent off
messages to the Iranian government.

This is not enough.

We must all redouble our efforts in the next few days to prevent this
barbaric sentence from being carried out, to prevent the execution of
the teacher Farzad Kamangar, and to push for the release of all
jailed worker activists in Iran.

I know that there are 50,000 of you reading this message who have not
yet sent off your protests. Please do not wait - go here now:

For those of you who already did send off your message, thank you --
but please do more.

Please pass this message on. Help us mobilize thousands more trade
unionists in support of our sisters and brothers in Iranian jails.

If you are on Facebook, make sure to sign up to our cause - and sign
up your Facebook friends, here:

August is a very difficult time to mobilize people. Many who would
ordinarily be supporting this campaign are away on holiday. That's
why it's so important that if you are reading this message, you act

Sousan and Shiva need our help. Let's not fail them.

Thank you.

Eric Lee

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