At the start of December, the Iranian government arrested over 40 left-wing Iranian student activists. Some have been released but many are still in prison. (A full update will appear in the next issue of Solidarity.) Meanwhile, there have been a number of protests held in London, and British students and education workers have launched this statement of solidarity.
As education workers and student activists, we condemn the detention of over forty student activists by the Iranian regime since 7 December (16 Azar in the Iranian calendar). This date has been a day of student protest in Iran for many years; it is now a symbol of Iranian students’ struggle against the theocratic-capitalist regime of the Islamic Republic just as it was against the dictatorship of the Shah.
Activists were arrested in the run up to the day of action, and following the demonstrations and actions which took place in a number of cities. Many are now reportedly being held in Tehran’s notorious Evin prison and have been subjected to torture.
This is just the latest act of repression dealt out by the Islamic Republic; it follows an intense crackdown on the Iranian workers’ movement and the brutal victimisation of leading trade unionists such as Tehran busworkers’ leader Mansour Ossanlou and Saqez bakers’ union activist Mahmoud Salehi. The Iranian regime is acutely aware of the growing alliance between Iran’s workers’ and student movements; meanwhile it is using the threat of a US attack to legitimise itself and step up its repression of dissent.
We call on the Iranian government to immediately release all detaine student, women’s and labour movement activists, and call on all working-class, student, left and anti-war activists and organisations in the UK for solidarity with Iranian workers, students and women against the dual threats of US militarism and theocratic-capitalist oppression.
If you would like to sign, or help our campaigning on this, email email@example.com