Reporting by PMOI/MEK
Iran, July 21, 2021—The people of Khuzestan continued their province-wide protests for the sixth consecutive night on Tuesday. The protests, triggered by extreme water shortages caused by the regime’s destructive policies, reflect the multitude of problems the people of Khuzestan and other provinces face. And over the past week, they have turned into political protests, with the people calling for the overthrow of a regime that is responsible for the misery of the majority of Iran’s population.
On Tuesday, as in previous days, demonstrators expressed their protest by lighting fires and blocking roads and shouting slogans such as “Down with Khamenei,” “Down with the dictator,” and “The people want regime change.” The regime continues to use its repressive forces to try to quell the protests, but the people continue to resist and prevent the regime from shutting down their voices.
The regime has dispatched backup forces from Isfahan, Lorestan, and Tehran, to suppress the protests. But protesters in Ahvaz, Hamidiyeh, Kut Abdollah, Izeh, Susangerd, Hoveizeh, Mahshahr, Shush came to the streets again and held their demonstrations.
According to reports from locals and videos posted on social media, the regime is using motorcades, teargas, and pepper spray to disperse the crowds. In many areas, the security forces have opened fire on the protesters. But none of these measures have quelled the voice of protesters, who have no other means to meet their demands, a fact that the regime’s own officials are acknowledging.
On Tuesday night, the situation was especially tense in Izeh, where the regime’s security forces opened fire on protester, wounding several and killing at least one youth. The people were chanting “Down with Khamenei,” calling for the ouster of regime supreme leader Ali Khamenei. They also chanted, “We don’t want the Islamic Republic.”
In Susangerd, there was a very large demonstration, and the protesters were chanting anti-regime slogans. Equally large crowds were seed in Ahvaz and other cities.
On Tuesday, a large crowd gathered for the funeral of three protesters who were killed by security forces in the previous days. The crowd expressed their fury toward the regime.
According to reports obtained by the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK), Mostafa Naimavi died of gunshot wounds in Shadegan on Friday after security forces opened fire on protesters in Shadegan. Naimavi was shot in the chest.
Ghassem Khaziri, 17, shot security forces in Kut Abdollah by security forces on Friday night, died of his wounds in the hospital on Saturday.
And on Sunday, security forces opened fire and killed Ali Mazraeh in Kuy Zaviyeh during protests over water shortages.
On Tuesday, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio expressed his support for the people of Iran and condemned the Iranian regime’s violent response to the protests. “The U.S. should stand in support of the protesters instead of negotiating a deal with the evil regime in Tehran,” Sen. Rubio said.
Khuzestan is faced with a severe water crisis, mainly due to the regime’s destructive policies. In recent weeks, reports from Khuzestan show the Hur ol-Azim marsh drying up and livestock dying due to lack of water.
At the same time, the province’s inhabitants are facing additional problems due to electricity outages. Last week, the people have held protests over power blackouts.
The unjustified creation of dams on the Karun river in the region is the main reason the people are facing water shortages. Khuzestan is one of several provinces that are faced with water shortages due to government policies. In May, the Arman newspaper published a column about the water shortage crisis and wrote, “This is a struggle that, according to some, is rooted in the inefficiency of government officials in managing water sources and has resulted in the destruction of the lives of many citizens who rely on these water sources to make a living.”
Protests in other provinces
While protests rage in Khuzestan, people in other provinces are also taking to streets to protest the regime’s destructive policies.
On Tuesday, a group of merchants in the city of Gonabad, eastern Iran held a rally, protesting the bazar’s closure. They are protesting the market situation in this economy crisis.
Also, dairy farmers in the city of Neyshabur, southern Iran, held a rally protesting the government’s destructive economic policies.
They demanded all corrupt officials be expelled from their posts.
The protesters are protesting restrictions placed on the price of milk by the Rouhani government. The government has let the price of livestock feed to grow unabated while imposing limits on the price of milk, making it difficult for the dairy farmers to run their operations and make a living.
The farmers are demanding the government to provide a solution to the current situation.
The deprived workers of the Haft Tappeh Sugarcane Company continued their strike on Tuesday, with a gathering in the yard of the company’s main complex. The protesting workers said they will continue their protests and gatherings until their demands are addressed properly.
The main demands raised by the protesting workers are:
– Immediate payment of their delayed paychecks and extending their insurance booklets.
– Their colleagues who have been expelled from their jobs be returned to work immediately.
– All company officials involved in corruption be expelled from their posts.
– Vaccination of all workers.