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Iran News in Brief – May 3, 2023

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West Must Act Against Iran’s Islamic Dictators Now or We Will Regret It – Comment


The women and young people of Iran are fighting a life-and-death battle against their terror-sponsoring religious dictatorship – Britain and the West must do everything they can to help, writes US Congressman Patrick Kennedy.

The regime’s brutal and violent reaction to the protests, including arbitrary detention, torture, and extrajudicial killings, is a clear indication of its flagrant disregard for the will of its people.

However, the Iranian people have remained resilient and persistent in the face of such oppression, and their cause must be supported by the international community.

Enter the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), led by the indefatigable Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, who has emerged as a key figure in securing Iran’s democratic future.

Her visionary 10-Point plan for Iran’s future, a contemporary, secular platform that espouses the separation of religion and state, as well as the rights of women and minorities, offers a progressive and enlightened alternative to the oppressive policies of the present regime.

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Iran Uprising at a Glance

Based partially on reporting by PMOI (MEK) Network in Iran

Wednesday, May 3, 2023 – 8 PM GMT + 1

  • Days: 230
  • Protests: 282 cities
  • Fatalities: 750+ estimated deaths, 675 identified by MEK
  • Detentions: 30,000

Wednesday marked the 230th day of Iran’s nationwide uprising. Parallel to horrific chemical attacks targeting innocent schoolgirls, regime officials have also been ramping up executions.  Twelve Baluch compatriots, including two women, were hanged in the span of just four days.

Reports by the Iranian opposition, Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), indicate there have been protests across Iran by people from all walks of life.

Pensioners and retirees of the regime’s Social Security Organization in the city of Ahvaz in Khuzestan Province, southwest Iran, began holding a rally and marching on Wednesday, protesting their deplorable situation.

Regime operatives continued their chemical gas attacks targeting schoolgirls on Wednesday.  Reports from Sanandaj, the provincial capital of Kurdistan, indicate that the all-girls Parvin Etesami Elementary School was targeted.

The all-girls Hazrat-e Zeynab High School in Marivan, northwest Iran, was also the target of a chemical weapons attack by regime operatives on Wednesday. Another school in Yazd, central Iran, was targeted by regime operatives.

In a report from Isfahan, central Iran, students of the local Arts University held a gathering on Wednesday protesting the campus authorities’ escalating harassment measures against the students.

In other reports from this city, municipality service workers held a gathering today protesting and demanding regime officials respect and acknowledge their rights.

In other reports from this city, teachers and educators held a rally outside the provincial Education Department demanding their rights be acknowledged and respected.

Residents of the Qare Hassanlu village near the city of Urmia in northwest Iran held a gathering on Wednesday to protest the regime’s policies of confiscating their lands.

Workers and employees of the Water-Sewage Department in the town of Lali in Khuzestan Province, southwest Iran, held a gathering on Wednesday, demanding their delayed paychecks.

In Qazin, People who have placed down payments for homes with the regime’s “Maskan-e Mehr” project rallied outside the Governor’s office demanding their homes.

People in the Shahrak-e Bagheri district of the capital, Tehran were chanting anti-regime slogans on Tuesday night, including:

“Down with Khamenei!”
“Down with the dictator!”


Influential Newspaper Warns of Rebellion In Iran


On May 2, in an article entitled “Fractures and faults of the society remain unanswered”, the state-run Farhikhtegan newspaper, quoted a state-affiliated sociologist to warn that the regime’s unending crises will eventually lead to social rebellion.

The paper which is run by Khamenei’s senior advisor Ali Akbar Velayati wrote: “After the war [with Iraq] and from 1990 to 2016 and 2017, we were facing the emergence of a series of social movements. These social movements did not receive a suitable response in a historical period until 2013, 2015, and 2016, and therefore, society went on from the movement phase to the rebellion phase. Social movements were sidelined and social riots, which included all social strata, were put on the agenda.”

“When the current goes from a movement to a rebellion, at this stage, collapse becomes an option and revolution might also emerge. This is what we are dealing with today,” Farhikhtegan added. “If this situation goes on, its rebelliousness may collapse and expand to something called a revolution.”

The paper warned: “Day by day, issues and problems advance and there is an accumulation of other issues, and the society turns into a rebellious status and becomes the cause of big riots. Today, we are basically facing a rebellious society, and this is very, very dangerous, and there is a need for a fundamental revision in the political, cultural, and social system of Iran.”

Canada Sanctions Iranian Regime for Continued Human Rights Violations


The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today announced that Canada is imposing additional sanctions under the Special Economic Measures (Iran) Regulations. This is the 11th package of sanctions imposed by Canada against the Iranian regime since October 2022, and builds on Canada’s efforts to align with recent designations announced by the European Union, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Today’s sanctions list one entity and nine individuals for their role in gross and systematic human rights violations in Iran and abroad. The entity listed today exemplifies the regime’s brutality and disregard of human rights as it is the site of a record number of state executions.

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Another Fuel Porter Killed in Southeastern Iran


On Tuesday, May 2, a fuel porter was shot and killed by the Iranian regime’s security forces in Saravan City.

According to a human rights organization, the victim was identified as Sanaullah Dehwari, 23 years old, the son of Sekander and a native of the Aspich district of Saravan County. The source reported that IRGC forces in the Kalegan area fired directly at the motorcycle of the poor fuel porter and Mr. Dehwari was later killed from bullet wounds.

According to the same source, in 2022, a total of 845 citizens were targeted by the regime’s security forces, of which 571 citizens lost their lives. The number comprises the deaths of 22 freight carriers, 9 fuel porters, and 540 civilians. 274 citizens were also injured due to the indiscriminate firing of these criminal forces.

Iran Is Diving Into the Disinformation Wars, Microsoft Says


Iran’s state-backed hackers are expanding their cyber playbook to include disinformation campaigns, Microsoft warned in a report Tuesday.

Driving the news: Microsoft estimates that the Iranian government was behind 24 “cyber-enabled influence operations” throughout 2022, including 17 since mid-June.

That was more than three times as many as in 2021, when that number stood at seven.

Why it matters: Microsoft’s findings mark an escalation in Iran’s adversarial cyber interests, given the country has historically leaned solely on more-traditional disruptive hacks in its operations.

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Iran Sees Nationwide Protests, Night Rallies Marking Int’l Labor Day

Workers in Iran holding a rally and demanding their rights be acknowledged and respected

Iran is witnessing its 229th day of the nationwide uprising on Tuesday following a busy day of protests and night rallies by workers and people throughout the country marking International Workers Day. Cities across Iran saw workers of different industrial sites continue their strike while other laborers took to the streets to hold gatherings and launch marches demanding regime officials respect and acknowledge their rights. People throughout Iran continue to specifically hold the mullahs’ Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei responsible for their miseries, while also condemning the oppressive Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) and paramilitary Basij units, alongside other security units that are on the ground suppressing the peaceful demonstrators.

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Five Female Political Prisoners Transferred From Qarchak to Evin Prison

Five female political prisoners sent to Evin min

Five female political prisoners were transferred from Qarchak Prison to the Evin Prison on Monday, May 1, 2023. There is no information on the reason for the transfer of the five female political prisoners. It is speculated that considering that all of them are political prisoners detained for their political activities, their transfer to the Evin Prison could signal the adoption of harsher policies towards political activities by the clerical regime in Iran. Political prisoners in Iran, particularly women, face numerous problems in jail, including unsanitary conditions, lack of access to treatment, lack of access to defense counsel, restriction of their calls and visitations, etc.

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Discrepancy and Systematic Discrimination: Wages of Workers Versus Managers in Iran

Iran Workers

In the Persian calendar year 1401 (March 2022- March 2023), the government set the minimum wage for workers at 4.18 million tomans, while the poverty line reached 15 million tomans. This obviously indicates a severe difference between the minimum wage and the poverty line. Meanwhile, as a corrupt regime like the one in Iran cannot be trusted with transparency, it’s worthwhile to draw conclusions from what leaks to the outside world to understand what the exploitation rate in Iran looks like. If we consider 6.7 million tomans as an average base of a worker’s earnings, which given the average exchange rate of IRR versus USD equals $158.50, it might provide some insight into the hardships of Iranian workers’ lives.

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The School Poisonings in Iran in 2023: The Regime’s Denial and a Furious Nation

school girls gas mask

As soon as schools opened after the Persian New Year holidays, the school poisonings resumed and spread a new wave of uncertainty and intimidation among the families and students. As days pass by, the number of affected schools increases and so does the number of victims of this heinous act of the authorities in Iran. There is not the slightest doubt and the geographical extent of these attacks shows that the regime has systematically planned these school poisonings throughout the country. The school poisonings were faced with concealment and denial and censorship of news by the Islamic Republic for more than two months.

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Workers’ Strikes and Uprisings in Iran: The Threat to the Regime’s Existence in 2023

iran oil workers

Iranian labor strikes and uprisings gain international attention as workers from all industries and social classes protest against the corrupt and repressive regime. In particular, the strike of petroleum employees poses a major threat to the government’s existence, as thousands of employees in the South Pars Oil project and other sectors demand better wages, working conditions, and job security. According to reports, the strikes have been going on for more than a week, with workers calling for a 79% increase in their salaries, which they consider fair given the 40% inflation rate and the rising cost of living. They also demand shorter working hours and a more balanced work-rest schedule. Despite the Supreme Labor Council’s recent approval of a 27% increase in minimum wages, many workers view this as inadequate and unfair.

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Stockholm—April 29, 2023: MEK Supporters Rallied to Celebrate International Workers’ Day, Supporting the Iranian Workers’ Strike

Stockholm—April 29: MEK Supporters Rallied to Celebrate May Day, Supporting the Iranian Workers

Stockholm, Sweden—April 29, 2023: Freedom-loving Iranians, supporters of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) held a rally in front of the Swedish parliament in solidarity with the Iranian Revolution. They celebrated International Workers’ Day and expressed their solidarity with the Iranian workers’ strike across the country.

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Berlin—April 29, 2023: MEK Supporters Rallied to Celebrate International Workers’ Day, Supporting the Iranian Workers’ Strike

Berlin—April 29, 2023: MEK Supporters Rallied to Celebrate May Day, Supporting the Iranian Workers

Berlin, Germany—April 29, 2023: Freedom-loving Iranians, supporters of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) held a rally in solidarity with the Iranian Revolution. They celebrated International Workers’ Day and expressed their solidarity with the Iranian workers’ strike across the country.

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Also, read Iran News in Brief – May 2, 2023