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Iran: Schoolgirls; From Burn to Hopelessness

Iran-schoolgirls-Shin Abad

By Amir Taghati

7 years ago, 12 girl students were burned in their classroom; today, they are still crying out for help, but the regime is paying no attention.

Shin Abad, which is a district in Piranshahr City in Iran’s North West; and is now one of the country’s most well-known villages.

This village gained special attention on 5th December 2012, when one of its girls’ schools caught on fire due to inefficient heating facilities; 29 students were burned, 3 of whom lost their lives.

From the remaining 26 injured, 12 were found in critical conditions and as a result, had to undergo numerous surgeries.

To date, these students who are now 15-year-old adolescents, are wondering why in a country that’s likened to a ‘sea of oil’, they’re not been looked after. They are still carrying the heavy weight of their trauma with them, with no joy for life or hope for future.

Lost hopes of Shin Abad students

These students have a lot to say, but don’t know where to go or who to talk to.

One of them says: “I am deeply saddened. The older I get, the sadder I feel. Why is no one hearing us out? I want to play, I want to live; but how can I when I look like this? I’ve lost all hopes. Ever since I was a child, I always dreamt of becoming a guitarist one day; but how can I pursue that dream when I’ve lost my hand? I hate to go out, so I have imprisoned myself for a while now; people fear us and we are scared of them too; which is why we avoid going out altogether”.

These were the words of just one of the victims, who caught on fire in the blink of an eye. Her name is Ameneh. She has been undergoing countless surgeries to date, which she talks about: “They have anaesthetized us so much that we can’t even be anaesthetized anymore. These surgeries have been useless, and only hurt us more. Why can’t the Health Ministry send us abroad? We were told by a doctor, who had come from overseas to examine us in a congress, that our faces can be improved with only 4 surgeries overseas. Why isn’t our future being considered? We didn’t choose to burn ourselves, did we? Why should we be living and studying in a place that has no facilities?”

The reason why Shin Abad students are not being attended to

In a land that has the world’s second biggest gas reserve, the simple plastic surgery of burn victims shouldn’t be so hard. The governmental authorities have not attended to any of these girls whatsoever; if they had any intentions of looking after these girls, they would have done so by now; our country has some of the best doctors and surgeons, who are able to do great surgeries for only 1 to 30 million Toman. In Tehran alone, more than 300 plastic surgeries are done a day; so how come these victims are an exception? Why aren’t they receiving the treatment they need?”

These schoolgirls are suffering from the consequences, whilst billions of dollars are being plundered and spent on countries like Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Yemen, and Iraq; the Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran use the wealth that belongs to Iranian people, to build equipped hospitals overseas, in order to support terrorism in those regions.

For 6 years, the parents of these girls have followed things up with lawyers and doctors, and after so long, have finally managed to organise for an overseas trip for further medical treatment; which was scheduled for after the completion of exams, in June 2018. However, one of the regime’s parliamentarians in Pranshahr has denied the news which has once again taken away the hope of the victims and their parents.

It is highly unlikely that the regime would ever consider treating these girls; especially given that its history is filled with oppression and plunder for the past 40 years; these girls are amongst the many other Iranians who are being continuously neglected.

The problems and pains of people will go away only with the subversion of the regime; which is what the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) will be demonstrating about in its rally on 30th June in Paris.