Hundreds killed or wounded in six-day clashes in Khuzestan Province
New clashes broke out this morning between security forces and local residents in several districts of Ahwaz, including Kut Abdullah, Kian and Khashayar.
In an urgent appeal this morning, Iranian Resistance’s President-elect Maryam Rajavi called on UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour for their immediate intervention to stop the brutal massacre of people in Khuzestan Province, particularly the Arab residents of Ahwaz.
Mrs. Rajavi called for immediate dispatch of a UN mission to Iran to visit those in detention, the wounded and also the families of those killed in the ongoing uprising in Iran’s oil-rich province.
Resumption of anti-government protests for the sixth consecutive day takes place at a time when agents of various suppressive organs, including the special anti-riot forces, Revolutionary Guards, Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS), State Security Forces, Bassij and Ansar-e Hizbollah paramilitary forces have been stationed throughout the city, making widespread arrests.
MOIS agents have started to re-arrest former political prisoners in Ahwaz and other cities in the province. So many arbitrary arrests have been made that the five prisons in the city are full and a large number of detainees are under interrogation in safe-houses belonging to the suppressive agencies.
Balal Mosque in Sepidar neighborhood and similar places in Ahwaz are being used as temporary detention centres by MOIS agents and the Revolutionary Guards.
Schools and shops in Ahwaz remain closed and young people are countering suppressive forces’ savage aggression by attacking government buildings, as well as centers and vehicles belonging to the security forces.
When Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani, known in the area as the Butcher of Ahwaz for his role in the bloody suppression of anti-government disturbances in the city in 1979, tried to enter an Ahwaz neighbourhood called Dayereh with his large contingent of bodyguards on Tuesday afternoon, young people attacked them with a barrage of stones, forcing Shamkhani and his entourage to flee.
Unrest has spilt to other cities of the province and intense clashes between local residents and suppressive forces have broken out in the cities of Mahshahr, Abadan, Khorramshahr and Shoushtar.
In clashes in Ahwaz and other cities hundreds of protesters have been killed or wounded. A number of suppressive agents have also been killed in clashes with young protesters.
Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
April 20, 2005