Ei-iE

Iran: Extensive Arrest of Teachers During Protest on 14 March

published 15 March 2007 updated 15 March 2007

According to EI contacts in Iran, over 50 teachers were reportedly arrested on 14 March during their demonstration in Tehran for better pay and working conditions through the enactment of the Pay Parity Bill.

Among those arrested were five leaders of the Independent Teachers Trade Association of Iran.

Following the disappointing meeting at the Parliament on 13 March, Iranian teacher unions voted to resume the protest actions in front of the Parliament and Education Ministry the next day.

However, they were met with severe repression by the armed forces. Eyewitnesses claimed that members of the security and military forces stopped the protesters' buses and were threatening them to give up their protest action. Approximately 50-60 protesters were arrested, including the superintendent of the Teachers Trade Association of Iran, Mr Baghani, and their spokesperson, Beheshti Langroodi.

The military response to the protests was much more severe than before; EI is shocked to learn of the violence purportedly committed against the protesting teachers.

On 9 March, EI wrote to the Iranian authorities to invite them to enter into dialogue with the teacher associations and to release immediately and unconditionally teacher representatives arrested during their protest.

EI has no member organisation in Iran, but is in contact with the Co-ordinated Council of Cultural Workers' Association and the Solidarity Center in Iran, and will continue to monitor the situation.

For recent news related to the Iranian teachers' struggle, please click on the related links below.