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Iran News in Brief – November 12, 2023

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Sunday Protests in Iran

Protests related to labor and economic concerns in Iran persist as various groups, including retirees from the Social Security system, employees of the continental oil company, retirees and employees of the National South Oil-Producing Regions Company, retirees from the steel industry, oil and gas workers in Ahvaz, employees of the National Industrial Group of Steel, and nurses from Kashan and Aran & Bidgol, have come together.

Retirees in Kermanshah, Ahvaz, and Shush protested to express their dissatisfaction with their economic conditions and unaddressed demands. These demonstrations took place in front of the governor’s office and the Social Security Organization building.

On the same day, employees of the Ministry of Oil at the Continental Oil Company in the Siri Region staged another protest to voice their concerns. Their demands included the removal of the salary cap, eliminating age-related retirement restrictions, refunding surplus taxes, fully implementing Article 10 despite existing legal capacities and authorities, such as increasing the grade percentage and bonuses, and reimbursing backlogs resulting from delays in its execution, while also safeguarding employees’ pension funds.

Continuing the protests, retirees from the steel and mining industries gathered in Tehran, Isfahan, and Ahvaz. The Iranian Workers’ Free Union reported that the Tehran gathering encountered intervention from law enforcement and security forces, leading to the detention of some participants.

Also on Sunday, workers from various sectors of the National Industrial Group of Steel in Ahvaz carried out their second consecutive strike, participating in protest gatherings and marches.

Furthermore, nurses in Kashan and Aran & Bidgol staged a protest in front of the central headquarters of Kashan University of Medical Sciences. Videos from the demonstrations captured them chanting slogans, including “Nurses, speak up, demand your rights.”


Iran’s Democratic Resistance Condemns the Attack on Alejo Vidal Cuadras and Calls for an Investigation To Find the Culprits

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The President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Maryam Rajavi, has strongly condemned the attack on Alejo Vidal-Quadras, who holds the position of president of the International Committee for Justice. Rajavi, who lives in exile in Paris, demanded a thorough investigation into the attack so that the perpetrators and masterminds are prosecuted for this act of terrorism.

Since his time as Vice-President of the European Parliament (1999-2014), Vidal-Quadras has been involved with the activities of Iran’s National Council of Resistance which promotes the end of Islamist theocracy and a return to a democratic system. The politician played a decisive role in the removal of the People’s Mujahideen Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) from the list of terrorist organizations, and in ensuring the protection of this organization in Camp Ashraf (Iraq) and its safe and collective transfer out of Iraq. For his systematic support for the resistance of the Iranian people, Vidal Quadras was one of the first Western politicians to be included in the list of terrorists of the ayatollah’s regime.

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Iran’s Gas Shortage Threatens Oil Reserves

Iran oil fields

Arash Najafi, Head of the regime’s Chamber of Commerce Energy Commission, warned of a gas production shortage with severe implications for both Iran’s economy and the country’s oil reserves.

Speaking to the state-run ILNA News Agency, Najafi emphasizes that insufficient gas injection into aging oil reservoirs is causing oil production in Iran to decline significantly. Reports indicate that 80% of Iran’s oil production is coming from reservoirs with decreasing pressure, leading to an annual 8-10% reduction in oil output.

While 300 million cubic meters of gas should be injected daily to maintain oil production, the actual injection in 2018 was far less, around 37 million cubic meters. This gas production decline has been exacerbated by decades of underinvestment in the gas sector, a lack of Western extraction technology, mismanagement, and sanctions. The situation is critical as many of Iran’s oil reserves are aging.

Instead of addressing the gas injection shortfall, the clerical regime has focused on drilling new oil wells, which has not compensated for the production loss. The gas shortage has also driven increased domestic oil consumption, causing a 10% surge in the past year.

Severe Nurse Shortage in Iran Threatens Patient Care, Drives Emigration


Mohammad Sharifi Moghadam, the Secretary-General of the Nurses’ House, has raised concerns about patient deaths in Iranian hospitals due to a severe shortage of nurses. He noted that more than 3,000 nurses emigrate from Iran annually, a number not accounted for in the healthcare workforce by the Ministry of Health.

Speaking on November 12 to the state-run Etemad Online, Sharifi Moghadam emphasized the critical nature of the situation, stating that patients are losing their lives due to the nurse shortage. He also highlighted widespread nurse dissatisfaction, with over 90% expressing discontent in official statistics, and fewer than 10% working in non-clinical roles.

Sharifi Moghadam identified Germany, the United States, Australia, and Canada as the preferred destinations for nurse emigration. He stressed that the emigrating nurses are typically experienced professionals, and filling this workforce gap is a significant challenge. He further emphasized that the country’s healthcare system is in desperate need of these healthcare professionals.

Previously, the Secretary-General of the Nurses’ House in Iran reported a shortage of 70,000 nurses. A report in the “Donya-e-Eqtesad” newspaper in May mentioned that over 10,000 doctors and nurses had emigrated from Iran in the past year, with 16,000 general practitioners leaving the country in the last four years.

Severe Air Pollution Prompts Shutdown of Schools in Isfahan Province


On November 21, 2022, due to severe air pollution, schools in 10 cities in Isfahan province, Iran, were closed. This decision affected educational classes at all levels in Isfahan city and the surrounding areas, including Khomeini Shahr, Falavarjan, Shahin Shahr, Zarin Shahr, Mobarakeh, Najafabad, Pirbakran, Fooladshahr, and Borkhar.

The Director-General of Crisis Management in Isfahan, Mansour Shishehforoush, explained that the prolonged calm weather and the buildup of air pollutants had led to this closure. Additionally, several cities in Khuzestan province, including Ahvaz and others, were also experiencing unhealthy air quality conditions.

This pollution issue is mainly attributed to the presence of industries like oil, gas, petrochemicals, steel, and sugar production in Khuzestan, causing health and environmental concerns for the local population.

Pressure Mounts on Sunak to Proscribe Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as Terrorists


Nearly 70 MPs and peers from across the political divide have written to Rishi Sunak urging him to designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guards as terrorists. In a letter signed by Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, as well as Tory grandees Sir Iain Duncan Smith, David Davis, and Liam Fox and ex-head of the Army Lord Dannatt, the parliamentarians insist there is a “compelling and indisputable” case for proscribing the group to keep the UK and its citizens safe. In a statement they said that Iran had made at least 15 attempts since the start of 2022 to kidnap or even kill British or UK-based “enemies”, according to Scotland Yard.

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Iran: Repressive Centers Targeted in Iranshahr

Iranshahr regime center

Iran’s regime has been on a killing rampage, ratcheting up executions and repression in order to maintain its waning hold on power. On November 8 and 9, the regime carried out 18 executions in Karaj, Kermanshah, Urmia, Kerman, Kerman, Bandar Abbas, and Kashan.

The regime’s repressive measures have especially intensified in the province of Sistan and Baluchestan, where the Baluch people suffer even more because the regime does not tolerate Sunnis and other religious minorities.

In response to executions and repressive measures, rebellious youths in Iranshahr targeted the Iranian regime’s Revolutionary Prosecutor’s Office. This is one of the main centers where harsh sentences are handed out against the Baluch people. Explosions were heard in the surrounding area as the facility was targeted.

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Iran’s Regime Main Suspect of Assassination Attempt Against European Politician

Alejo Vidal Quadras maryam rajavi

An informed source in the Spanish police told the Associated Press that Dr. Vidal-Quadras himself has considered Iran’s involvement in this attack as one of the possible hypotheses and has shared it with the police.

The news agency also quoted another informed official stating that the police’s counterterrorism unit has joined the investigation, which could indicate the expansion of the scope of the investigation and the possibility of involvement by foreign elements, including those affiliated with Iran, in this assault.

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While Ordinary Iranians Struggle Under Poverty Regime Salaries Earn Exorbitant Wages

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Discussing justice within a government marked by oppression, crime, imprisonment, torture, and executions is both futile and irrational. Iran’s state-run daily, Ebtekar, addressed this issue, stating, “Justice is lost! Astronomical salaries are bestowed upon officials, staff, and members of state-owned companies’ boards of directors. It has nothing to do with justice; it’s merely an arbitrary withdrawal from the treasury at the behest of the wealthy.”

The issue of exorbitant incomes and their distribution is not a new one in this regime. The Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, has granted regime officials and their close associates unprecedented freedom to take as they please. This loyalty comes at a steep cost. The discussion of astronomical incomes has resurfaced in the context of the examination of the seventh program in the parliament. A clause in the 7th program states, “Legal salaries and benefits of employees of ministries, government institutions, and armed forces are paid in full without setting a salary and benefits ceiling.”

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The Iranian Regime’s Environmental Policies are Threatening Lives and Landscapes


The Iranian regime’s actions have far-reaching consequences, affecting not only its population but also the environment.

Two of these factors are excessive groundwater extraction and soil erosion, both of which have devastating effects on the country’s natural resources and the well-being of its citizens.

As we explore these issues, it becomes evident that the regime’s neglect and mismanagement of these environmental crises pose a significant threat to the people and their homeland.

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Baha’i Community Under Siege in Iran in 2023

iran bahai oppression

In a deeply troubling turn of events, the Baha’i community in Iran is facing an unprecedented wave of persecution, marked by a shocking series of 36 attacks over the past few days. These assaults, with a distressing focus on women, have resulted in the arrest of ten women, predominantly young, while an additional 26 individuals, including 16 women, have been handed sentences totaling a staggering 126 years in prison.

The targeted arrests unfolded in Isfahan earlier this week, where ten Baha’i women were detained, and in Yazd in recent weeks, with three more Baha’is apprehended. These arrests were accompanied by invasive home raids and the seizure of personal belongings, including electronic devices, books, cash, and valuables. Reports indicate that during one of these arrests, more than ten officers stormed the residence of a Baha’i woman.

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Manijeh Moazzen, a Journalist, Remains in Limbo Since 3 Days Ago

Manijeh Moazzen iran

Security forces arrested Manijeh Moazzen on Wednesday, November 8, 2023, at her workplace. Prior to that, they ransacked her residence in Tehran and confiscated some of her personal belongings.

No information is available on her whereabouts or the charges leveled against her.

Her family is very concerned since she has not been able to call home.

Ms. Moazzen is a journalist and a translator who cooperated with and weekly publication. She was a friend of Niloufar Hamedi who is presently in jail for her reporting of the death of Mahsa Amini.

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Wetlands of Iran’s Fars Province Gradually Dying


Ata Pourshirzad, the Director General of Environmental Protection in Fars Province, announced on November 9 that climate change and excessive extraction of groundwater have led to the gradual demise of the wetlands in this province.

According to the semiofficial ILNA news agency, Ata Pourshirzad, spoke about the role and effects of climate change on wetland ecosystems in Shiraz, stating that Fars Province has 14 wetlands, five of which are registered under the Ramsar Convention. The Arzhan and Parishan wetlands, located in the protected area and recognized as biosphere reserves, have completely dried up. The Ramsar Convention is the oldest modern environmental treaty for the conservation of wetlands worldwide, signed by member countries in Ramsar on February 2, 1971.

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Zurich, Switzerland—November 10, 2023: MEK Supporters Held a Photo Exhibition in Solidarity With the Iran Revolution

Zurich - Nov 10, 2023: MEK supporters held an exhibition in solidarity with the Iranian Revolution.

Zurich, Switzerland—November 10, 2023: Freedom-loving Iranians and supporters of the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) held a photo exhibition in solidarity with the Iranian Revolution and commemorated the martyrs of the nationwide uprising of the Iranian people.

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Also, read Iran News in Brief – November 11, 2023