Sections:

Article

Iran teachers deserve our support... 'The General Secretary of the Iran Teachersí Trade Association, Mr. Esmail Abdi, has been refused permission to leave Iran after being invited to the 7th World Congress of Education International...'

Iranian Teachers have been trying to build their own unions to support education in Iran, their students and themselves. The General Secretary of the Iran Teachersí Trade Association, Mr. Esmail Abdi, has been refused permission to leave Iran after being invited to the 7th World Congress of Education International, a global organization of teachersí unions and associations. The Congress was to take place in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada between July 21 and 26, 2015. Subsequently, Mr. Abdi was harassed and arrested by the government.

Esmail Abdi.The International Alliance in Support of Workers of Iran has asked that people express their solidarity by sending a message to the Iranian government. (Details below.)

Please take a moment out of your busy day and send a message in support of Mr. Abdi and his colleagues!

In global labor solidarityó

Kim Scipes Begin forwarded message:

Reply-To: "Info@workers-iran.org"

Urgent Action:

In Support of Teachers in Iran

The Iranian governmentís authorities arrested Mr. Esmail Abdi, the general secretary of the Iranian Teachersí Trade Association, on June 27, 2015.

Mr. Abdi was invited by the Education International (EI) to attend the EIís 7th World Congress which will take place in Ottawa, Canada from July 21 to 26th, 2015. He was travelling to Armenia in order to obtain visa for Canada; however, his passport and other documents were confiscated at the border and he was told that he had to return to Tehran and report to the public prosecutorís office at Evin about his situation including the fact that border agencies had received an order from Tehran according to which he was banned from leaving the country.

Mr. Abdi appeared before the prosecutor office in the Evin prison on Saturday, June 27th, accompanied by over 70 teachers. However, he was arrested and incarcerated while his colleagues were waiting for him outside the prison. Mr. Abdi already had a 10 year suspended sentence against him due to his activities with the Iranian Teachersí Trade Association. He was under mounting pressures by the agents of the Intelligence Ministry to resign from his position at the ITTA, which is an organization of teachers affiliated with the EI.

Iranian teachers organised three rounds of nationwide rallies in January, March and May 2015, to protest against their poverty wages (the estimate for the poverty line in Iran is roughly 3 million toman (US $1000.00) per month, but teachers average monthly income is around 1 million toman (about $330.00).

Iranian teachers are calling for free education for all and are strongly opposing the privatisation of schools and the education system, the casualization of teaching positions and discrimination in pay and benefits; teachers are demanding that all classes meet the internationally recognized standards. They are also calling for direct participation in preparing and editing the national curriculum and text books used in schools.

Iranian teachers are urgently demanding the immediate and unconditional release of all their incarcerated colleagues, including Messrs. Rasoul Bodaghi (jailed since September 2009), Mahmood Bagheri, Aliakbar Baghani ( Board member and secretary of the Iranian Teachers' Trade Associations who was also arrested recently) and Alireza Hashemi, general secretary of Iranís Teachersí Organization .

The Iranian government does not recognize independent labour organizations and the only so called official ďlabour organizationsĒ in Iran are directly created by the government, hence they have no credibility amongst workers. Like other workers, teachers and education workers in Iran have no right to strike, form their own independent organizations or protest. Teachers' activism in Iran is a constant target of government's security forces through harassment, intimidation, arrests and incarceration.

Iranian teachers need the broadest possible international solidarity from other education workers and labour organizations in the world.

Please send a protest letter to the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, supporting teachersí demands for fair wages and pensions, better working conditions, and against privatization and the neo-liberal policies of the Iranian government.

Please protest the unjust incarceration of Iranian teachers and demand the immediate and unconditional release of all imprisoned teachers and incarcerated labour activists; condemn the arrest and incarceration of Mr. Esmail Abdi, demanding his immediate release and supporting his right to attend the Education International's 7th World Congress in Ottawa, Canada, 21-26, July 2015.

International Alliance in support of workers in Iran (IASWI)

info@workers-iran.org/ http://www.workers-iran.org

Face book: https://www.facebook.com/IASWI

https://twitter.com/IASWIinfo

July 3, 2015

PLEASE SEND protest letters to:

∑ Leader of the Islamic Republic

Ayatollah Sayed ĎAli Khamenei

Twitter: @khamenei_ir (English) or @Khamenei_fa (Persian)

Email: info_leader@leader.ir ∑ President of the Islamic Republic of Iran

Hassan Rouhani

Email: media@rouhani.ir Twitter: @HassanRouhani (English) and

@Rouhani_ir (Persian)

∑ IRIís Minister of Education; Email: vazir@medu.ir

∑ Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations

Email: iran@un.int

Cc: info@workrs-iran.org

Sample resolution in support of teachers in Iran Ė updated July 3, 2015:

Whereas:

∑ Teachers in Iran have no right to form their own independent organizations, strike or protest;

∑ Teachers' activism in Iran is a constant target of government's security forces through harassment, intimidation, arrests and incarceration; ∑ Iranian teachers are demanding free education for all;

∑ Iranian teachers are opposed to the privatisation of schools, casualization of their teaching positions and are demanding that all classes meet the international regulations and standards;

∑ Iranian teachers are demanding direct participation in preparing and editing the national curriculum and texts used in schools;

∑ Iranian teachers organised three rounds of nationwide rallies in January, March and May 2015, to protest against their poverty wages (the estimate for the poverty line in Iran is roughly 3 million toman, $1000.00 per month, but teachers average monthly income is around 1 million Toman (about $330.00); Iranian teachers are demanding the immediate and unconditional release of all their incarcerated colleagues, Messrs. Rasoul Bodaghi (jailed since September 2009), Mahmood Bagheri, Aliakbar Baghani ( Board member and secretary of the the Iranian Teachers' Trade Associations who has been arrested recently) and Alireza Hashemi, general secretary of Iranís Teachersí Organization .

∑ Mr. Esmail Abdi, the secretary general of ITA, was summoned to Evin prison on Saturday 27, June 2015 and arrested and incarcerated upon his arrival. He was invited to attend the Educational Internationalís 7th World Congress in Ottawa, Canada.

∑ Iranian teachers need the broadest possible international solidarity from other unions in the world.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED :

∑............ supports teachersí demands in Iran for fair and decent wages and pensions and for free, comprehensive and democratic education;

∑...........will send a message to the relevant Iranian government authorities protesting the unjust incarceration of Iranian teachers and demanding the immediate and unconditional release of all imprisoned teachers and all incarcerated labour activists and political prisoners in Iran;

Ö.. condemns the arrest and incarceration of Mr Esmail Abi, demands his immediate release and support his right to attend the Education International's 7th World Congress in Ottawa, Canada, 21-26, July 2015.

For more information: info@workers-iran.org/ http://www.workers-iran.org



Comments:

Add your own comment (all fields are necessary)

Substance readers:

You must give your first name and last name under "Name" when you post a comment at substancenews.net. We are not operating a blog and do not allow anonymous or pseudonymous comments. Our readers deserve to know who is commenting, just as they deserve to know the source of our news reports and analysis.

Please respect this, and also provide us with an accurate e-mail address.

Thank you,

The Editors of Substance

Your Name

Your Email

What's your comment about?

Your Comment

Please answer this to prove you're not a robot:

1 + 1 =