May 3, 2021
At least 30 protesters were detained today during Labor Day protests in Tehran today. According to the Iran Workers Free Union, security forces had been stationed around the Ministry of Labor where labor unions and activists planned to gather for Labor Day protests. The security forces scattered the protesters who were on their way to the Ministry and detained at least 30 people including labor activists Assal Mohammadi, Hirad Pir Bodaghi and Saied Malayeri.
Asal Mohammadi and Hirad Pir Bodaghi have been detained and sentenced to prison before this for their support of workers.
The Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company 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.
Some of the detainees were released a few minutes after being arrested. Local reports indicated that the regime held a Labor Day gathering in Tehran in a bid to turn protests into a pro-regime event. The ceremony started with a Quran recitation and the broadcasting of regime anthems and was dedicated to praising the current situation of workers, underlining the government’s aid to workers.
Labor Day protests were also held in several other cities despite threats by security institutions banning labor activists and unions from protesting. Saturday is a working day in Iran and many employees were told they would either be suspended or fired if they did not come to work.
Labor Day protesters chanted “We will no longer vote because we’ve heard too many lies”, “Workers, students, teachers, unite”, “Our pain is your pain, everyone join us”, “Our enemy is right here. They lie in saying its America”, “Down with the oppressors, long live workers”, “A nation has never seen this much injustice”, “Enough empty promises! Our dining tables are empty”.