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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

May Day is the hope of the world!

This year’s international workers’ day is arriving at a time when there are signs of a global financial and economic crisis. The World Bank warns governments about the threat of food riots. And the prospect of crisis and catastrophe makes a bleak world - already reeling from the shock of the New World Order and the global war of terrorists - even bleaker.

The hope of changing these conditions lies in the struggle of a class that makes up the majority of the world’s population. This inverted world has been founded upon the wage slavery of this class, and for the preservation of this slavery. May Day, the day of international solidarity and struggle of the working class, is at the same time the day of unity of repressed humanity to change this inverted world. We call on the people of the world to stand up on May Day to capitalism and the catastrophes it causes, to starvation and war, terrorism, ignorance and domination of religion, to deprivation and inequality and in support of freedom, equality and human identity.

In Iran the working class faces the same conditions as May Day approaches. The difference is that in Iran the Islamic regime of the bourgeoisie is facing a deep economic, political and cultural crisis and there is an ongoing powerful anti-regime and revolutionary movement. The slogans “We Don’t Want Islamic Regime” and “You’ve Been Wasting our Time since 1979” which the youths in Tehran chanted recently, clearly depict the essence of the political situation in Iran. The working class is the backbone of this revolutionary movement. This is not only because of the numerous strikes and protests by workers, which are getting even more radical each day, as in the case of Kian Tyre workers, which ended up in barricades and direct clashes with the security forces, but also because the slogans and demands of the working class such as “Freedom, Equality, Human Identity,” “Socialism or Barbarism,” “End Sexual Apartheid,” “Abolish the Death Penalty,” “Woman’s Liberation is Society’s Liberation,” and “Human Life is Our Certain Right”, are echoed in mass demonstrations of teachers, women and youths on different occasions. Public executions, the attacks on millions of women for not observing Islamic veiling, punishing gays by throwing them down from heights, stoning to death, amputating hands and feet as a form of punishment, brutal attacks on leftist student activists, jailing workers’, teachers’ and women’s rights activists, flogging worker leaders for celebrating May Day - these are all a reflection of the Islamic Republic’s efforts to stop this unstoppable movement. May Day in Iran is in the frontline of this massive social confrontation, and it terrifies the Islamic regime more than anything else. The government’s “Workers’ House” has not even dared to organise the state-sponsored rally for this May Day in Tehran because in the past years they lost control of these masquerades, and the puppetry turned into workers’ march chanting socialist slogans.

This year’s May Day should be celebrated stronger and in greater numbers than ever before. Great masses of workers and all those yearning for freedom should be mobilised for May Day. In recent years, the workers’ movement in Iran has been supported internationally more then ever before, acknowledged as a political force that can change society. These are strong foundations upon which to build a powerful May Day. This May Day in Iran should attract massive sections with the call for “Freedom, Equality, Human Identity” and should be made the hope of the working people of the world.

WPI calls upon all workers, students, women and youths to mobilise for a magnificent and powerful May Day.

Long Live May Day!
Long Live Socialism!

Worker-communist Party of Iran (WPI)
April 17, 2008

Monday, April 28, 2008

Secularism, Sharia law and the future of civil society

Maryam Namazie will talk about Rowan Williams' recent comments on Sharia law's inevitability for Britain and the future of secularism and civil society tomorrow, April 29 at 8pm at St John's College, St Giles Street, Oxford, OX1 3JP. She will explain why political Islam needs to be challenged, and how her organisation is helping.

The talk is sponsored by Oxford Secular Society.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Saturday, April 19, 2008

For Du'a Khalil: on the anniversary of her stoning to death

To see my speech commemorating Du'a Khalil, stoned to death last year in Iraqi Kurdistan for falling in love with the wrong boy at an international conference organised by the Organisation of Women's Freedom in Iraq, click here.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Top hundred hottest atheist blogs

For your information, my blog has been rated one of the top hundred hottest atheist blogs here.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Behrouz Karimizadeh and Majid Pormajed have been released

Student activists Behrouz Karimizadeh (pictured left) and Majid Pormajed have been released! Congratulations to all who campaigned on their behalf.
We need to keep the pressure on though as Qasaban, Tavakoli, Mansori and Tavanche remain in prison.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Report on Boras speech on medieval executions

120 people came to see Maryam Namazie speak about medieval executions, Islam and women's rights in Boras, Sweden on April 15.

Maryam was interviewed by a number of radio stations and news of her talk was covered in the local press.

Here are a few pictures of the event.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Medieval Executions in 2008

Maryam Namazie will be speaking on Islam, stonings, honour killings and women's rights on April 15 from 19:00-21:00 at Kulturhuset i Borås Lilla scenenArr: Globala föreningen i Borås i samarbete med Mångkulturkonsulenten VästraGötalandsregionen och Kulturkontoret.

Here is the PR:


Två systrar i Iran är dömda till stening för otrohetsbrott eftersom de setts i sällskap av
två män. Mannen till en av systrarna hade lyckats få videobevis på detta. Högsta domstolen
i Iran har nu bekräftat dödsdomen och nu väntar stening. Systrarna blev till en
början dömda för olagligt umgänge vilket ska ha resulterat i 99 piskrapp var, men i
följande rättgång dömdes de istället för otrohetsbrott, trots att videobevisningen inte
innehöll några sexuella aktiviteter. Detta händer år 2008.

Varför straffas kvinnor på det här stenåldersmässiga sättet?

Under rubriken Stenålderstraff 2008 föreläser Maryam Namazie, om just dessa frågor.
Hon är en mycket välkänd rättsaktivist, programledare och kommentator i tv-program
om Iran, Mellersta östern, kvinnors rättigheter, kulturell relativism, sekularism,
humanism, religion, islam och politiska islam. Hon är också taleskvinna för
Ex-muslimska rådet i Storbritannien m.m.

Tisdag 15 april kl 19:00 Kulturhuset i Borås Lilla scenen
Arr: Globala föreningen i Borås i samarbete med Mångkulturkonsulenten Västra
Götalandsregionen och Kulturkontoret
Frågor kontakta

Marie-Louise Weise, 033-35 71 79
eller Omid Salehi 0706-339153

Monday, April 14, 2008

A state that arrests, detains and flogs workers should not be in the ILO!

To all labour organisations around the world

The ninety-seventh annual conference of the ILO will be held between May 28 and June 13, 2008. Every year this conference hosts a delegation from the Islamic Republic of Iran. Beside the Islamic Republic, the ILO also recognises Workers’ House and Islamic Workers’ Councils – i.e. organisations made by the regime against workers - as “workers’ organisations from Iran”.

The International Labour Solidarity Committee of the Worker-communist Party of Iran strongly protests against the participation of the Islamic Republic in the annual conference of the ILO and calls for the expulsion of this regime from the ILO.

Unfortunately, it has been argued that the attendance of the Islamic Republic and its Workers’ House at the annual conferences of the ILO is conducive to dialogue and to pressuring the Islamic Republic to recognise and respect the minimum rights of workers. However, this approach has plainly proved itself wrong. The Islamic Republic continues to arrest and imprison worker activists. It has not recognised any of the basic worker rights such as freedom of association, collective bargaining and the right to strike. Moreover, it has shamelessly added flogging to its techniques of repressing workers. Workers in Iran are right in condemning the ILO for its continued recognition of the Islamic Republic and its delegations.

In the past year alone, hundreds of trade unions around the world called for the release of two Iranian labour leaders, Mansoor Ossanlou and Mahmoud Salehi, and for respect for worker rights in Iran. However, the Islamic Republic has simply ignored these calls. Indeed, as documented by numerous human rights organisations, the atrocities of the regime in Iran against workers and all sections of the people have only intensified. The Islamic regime’s continued membership in organisations such as the ILO has thus become totally indefensible.

Our committee values highly the tremendous solidarity shown by labour organisations throughout the world with workers in Iran. We also believe that a decisive step towards supporting the struggle of the workers in Iran is the isolation of the Islamic Republic on an international scale and its expulsion, together with its Workers’ House, from the ILO. A state that arrests, detains and flogs workers should not be in the ILO! We request all labour organisations around the world to exercise their influence to expel the Islamic Republic of Iran from the ILO.

International Labour Solidarity Committee of the Worker-communist Party of Iran

Shahla Daneshfar, Coordinator
Bahram Soroush, Public Relations

Anti-riot police attack Iran tyre workers

Over 50 arrested, scores injured
Tehran – April 13, 2008

Around 7.30pm last night, anti-riot police smashed the gates and climbed over the walls of Kian Tyre factory, in the outskirts of Tehran, to forcefully evict hundreds of striking workers. Scores were beaten up and arrested, with some needing hospital treatment.

“They used axes and kicked in doors and began brutally attacking the workers with electric batons” - reports Farhad Ghaasemi, WPI reporter in Tehran. “Roaming the site on motorbikes, they battered anyone who happened to be on their way… Scores were arrested and at least two busloads of detained workers were taken out of the factory”.

The workers of Kian Tyre (formerly Alborz Tyre) have been on strike since Tuesday in protest at the non-payment of their wages - overdue since the fall of 2007. With their repeated calls having fallen on deaf ears, the workers yesterday decided that they had had enough and partially blocked the main road outside the factory with burning tyres to draw attention to their plight.

Earlier on the day, Tehran’s governor and deputy governor arrived at the factory to promise that the overdue wages would be paid within 48 hours. In another development, around 6pm, the head of the local security forces issued a warning that if the road was not cleared by 8pm, the police would move in. The workers rejected the promises as empty talk and said they would only end their action if the company’s Director came to talk to them and once the outstanding wages were paid in full; otherwise, they would stay put in the factory overnight.

According to WPI report, prior to the attack, a 5-6km zone around the factory was evacuated, and specialist and managerial staff were secretly led out from the back of the compound. Police and ambulance sirens could be heard throughout the area.

The whereabouts of the 50 or so detained workers remains unknown. However, an Iranian labour news outlet and several workers’ organisations in Iran have named the location of detention as Ahmad Abaad Mostofi police station.

Kian Tyre employs around 2,000 workers, who are owed from five to eight months’ unpaid wages. According to one worker, so far only one month’s pay, from last autumn, and a $120 New Year’s allowance has been paid.

WPI has called on labour and human rights organisations around the world to condemn this vicious attack and to demand the immediate release of all those detained. It reiterated the call for the expulsion of the Islamic Republic from the ILO and all international organisations.


Please publicise, as widely as possible, the news of this outrageous attack by the Islamic government in Iran, condemning it in the strongest possible terms. Letters of protest may be sent to the following offices of the Islamic Republic government. Please forward a copy to WPI’s International Labour Solidarity Committee for info:

Supreme Leader:
Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei
Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street
Shahid Keshvar Doust Street
Tehran, Iran

The President:
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
The Presidency
Palestine Avenue
Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Iran

The Head of the Judiciary:
Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi
Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Pasteur St.,Vali Asr Ave.,
South of Serah-e Jomhouri,
Tehran, Iran

International Labour Solidarity Committee of the Worker-communist Party of Iran (ILSC-WPI)

Head office:
Co-ordinator: Shahla Daneshfar
Public Relations: Bahram Soroush

Friday, April 11, 2008

Conference to Remember Du’a Khalil and denounce Honour Killings globally!

Date: Saturday 12 April, 2008
Time: 5.00-9:00pm
University of London Union (ULU)
Room 3D
Malet Street London WC1E 7HY
Closest underground: Russell Square

A year after the world was stunned by images of a 17 year old girl being stoned to death in Iraqi Kurdistan; an international panel will debate the rise of honour killings, violence against women, gender apartheid and political Islam in Kurdistan/Iraq and the Middle East.

The high profile speakers are women’s rights activists, academics and experts from Kurdistan, Iraq, Iran, Sweden, New Zealand, and Britain and include:

- Dr Sandra Phelps: Head of Sociology Department, Kurdistan University
- Houzan Mahmoud: representative of Organisation Women’s Freedom in Iraq
- Heather Harvey: head of women’s campaign-Amnesty International in UK
- Maryam Namazie: Spokesperson of Equal Rights Now; Organisation against Women's Discrimination in Iran
- Maria Hagberg: Cofounder of Network against Honour Killings in Sweden
- Azar Majedi: Chair of Organisation for Women’s Liberation in Iran

Chair: Maria Exall, Communication Workers' Union National Executive in UK

For more information and to confirm your attendance please contact the organiser: Houzan Mahmoud Tel: 07534264481

Organisation of Women’s Freedom in Iraq- Abroad representative

Here is a picture of the event:

Thursday, April 10, 2008

A statement on the anniversary of Du’a Khalil’s gruesome stoning

Organisation of Women’s Freedom in Iraq-Abroad representative
April 7th 2008

It has been almost a year since teenage girl Du’a Khalil was stoned to death by a baying mob in Iraqi Kurdistan. The 17 year-olds’ “crime” was to have fallen in love with a boy outside the Yazidi tribe and religion. Betrayed by her family, she was dragged to a summary execution in the centre of Bashiqa city where a 2,000-strong mob, including her relatives, cheered as they hurled rocks.

When footages of the barbaric killing were broadcast people around the world were shocked. That was on 7th April 2007 but a year later the situation is even more dangerous for the women and girls of Iraq.

Thousands more, from Basra to Baghdad and through to Kurdistan, have become victims of murder, violence and rape – all backed by laws, tribal customs and religious rules. Each day there are reports of women or girls being murdered by their relatives in the name of “honour”.

More than ever they are subject to daily humiliations, are being forced into marriages – sometimes as children, are suffering female genital mutilation and are being driven to suicide.

In Basra just removing a veil can cost a woman her life. Iraqi police report at least 15 women are murdered every month for breaching Islamic dress code.

Meanwhile, Sharia law is being used to underpin government rule, denying women their most basic human rights. Du’a was a victim of religious bigotry. According to the Yazidi faith she was only allowed to marry within her own religion and tribe. When it emerged that the boy she’d been dating wasn’t a Yazidi it spelled her death.

But despite extensive evidence, including the boasts of many involved in her stoning, Du’a’s killers have not been brought to justice. Police were among the crowd at her stoning and there have been accusations of the law turning a blind-eye. In a society where men are encouraged to claim ownership of women, crimes like this are becoming the norm.

This brutality must stop.

This can only be achieved through your support in a struggle for unconditional equality and freedom for these women and girls.

Religion is a personal choice and should never be allowed to override our rights and liberties. We must stand up against those who want to subjugate our lives, education and political choices to their religious bigotries.

We will not budge, we will continue to mobilise public opinion against the murder of women and girls in the name of “honour”. We will struggle for the creation of a movement to separate religion from the state and its laws, and for women’s rights.

The horrific crime of honour killings and the stoning of women is a crime we must all denounce. It must be consigned to the past.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

On the movie Fitna

The Internet release of the film Fitna provided a pretext for an array of the right wing and reactionary forces of our time to declare a Jihad against humanity! In this holy war on secularism and freedom of expression Islamists are not alone. Western governments and Eurocentric racist forces support and reinforce Islamists in different ways. The major winners of this Jihad against humanity are Islamists, Mullahs, Imams and criminal Islamic governments that claim to be the representatives of millions of people in countries plagued by Islam. They demand - and indeed receive - damages for “the hurt feelings of Muslims” who they claim they represent. EU Foreign Ministers line up to endorse this “representation”, and under the pretext of condemning Fitna, support “moderate Islam” and repeat the words of criminals such as Khomeini and Bin Laden that “Islam is the religion of peace!” In this climate, the UN Human Rights Council passes a resolution that demands “respect for religious beliefs”, thereby declaring that what will not be respected is freedom of expression and the human being! Fitna recalls some truths about the crimes of Islamists in order to ascribe those crimes to so-called “Muslims;” it demands their removal from Europe – no matter if most have in fact fled precisely from those atrocities!

The common denominator of these reactionary camps is the false assertion that political Islam is not the creation of Islamic forces - often with the direct backing of Western governments - but a product of the beliefs of people living in countries plagued by Islam, many of whom, like the people of Iran, are in fact fighting to get rid of the menace of political Islam. These camps directly or indirectly support the political Islamic movement and religious Mafia that were nurtured during the Cold War by Western governments, and which, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, emerged as a camp claiming political power. Western governments are now at pains to strengthen the pro-West, “moderate” wing of political Islam to conclude this power struggle to their own advantage. This is the principal political aspect of the uproar surrounding Fitna.

The victims of this astonishing Jihad of the 21st century are not only the people in countries plagued by Islam, but all people, including those in the West. The beneficiaries of this Holy Jihad are not only Mullahs, Imams and Islamic governments, but also the political reaction in the West, which promotes intervention of religion in the state and the educational system. This is a co-ordinated Jihad on the secularist, left-wing and progressive movement that has emerged within the past few years, particularly in the West. This is an unprecedented attack on the values that several generations of socialists and progressives in the West have fought for. Above all, it is an outrageous attack on freedom of expression. If Islam or any religion or system of beliefs cannot be criticised, exposed or even mocked then the “freedom of expression” that remains will be mere mockery!

WPI calls on the freedom-loving people of the world, on workers’ and progressive organisations, on atheists, secularists, humanists and socialists to stand up with full force to this united Jihad of political Islam, Western governments and Eurocentric racism. Unconditional freedom of expression must be defended. The absolute separation of religion from the state and education must be demanded. Flirting with Islam, Islamists and other religions should be done away with. The support provided by the EU and UN to political Islam and religion should be strongly condemned. This concerted attack by reactionaries on humanity is at the same time an opportunity to raise the banner of freedom, secularism and respect for human dignity even higher. On behalf of workers and people in Iran who are fighting to topple the detested Islamic regime and to build freedom, equality and prosperity, we state that we stand with all our strength on the side of the freedom-loving people of the world.

Worker-communist Party of Iran
April 1, 2008

Danger of Death for Communist Students in Iran

To members of Friends of the Equality and Freedom Seeking University Students of Iran
Kave Heydari

In the past 4 months, the Islamic regime of Iran has attacked and oppressed the leaders and activists of the Iranian communist movement -- namely, the “Freedom and Equality Seeking University Students.” More than 41 of our comrades have been arrested and imprisoned since December 2007. These brave people have been brutally tortured and tormented. Because of international pressures, the Islamic regime has been forced to give some of these students “conditional release” on the condition their families pay considerable amounts for bail to provide these individuals limited freedom until their trial. There are still four of our comrades in prison in Iran. Two of them, Behrouz Karimi-zadeh and Peyman Piran, remain in jail because their family cannot afford to post bail. The amount of bail for Behrouz Karimi-zadeh is over £160,000.

The Iranian government will grant no release -- even conditional release on bail -- to the remaining two comrades, Ali Kantoori and Farhad Haji Mirzaie. They are in horrible condition. Even now they are endure barbaric torture. Behrouz Karimi-zadeh is a writer and the chief-editor of Khak Journal, a well known voice in students’ movements. He is among the founders of “Equality and Freedom Seeking Students”. Behrouz is horribly injured from constant systematic tortures during the past 3 month. Mentally and physically, he is ill and in great pain. He has received especially severe tortures to break him down. He has unsuccessfully attempted to commit suicide with the electric cord in his solitary cell. He was taken to the prison hospital, but he received only minimal treatment and before his injuries were healed, he was subjected to further torture. He was forced to “confess” on camera and renounce his own political and social activities and announce them as actions against the country’s security.

These allegations can be punishable by execution according to the legislations in Iran. Behrouz’s right ear is damaged and has become deaf following insertion of hard object in his ear. He has been subjected to high voltage electric shocks on various parts of his body including his genitals, and his body has been flogged with cable, especially on the soles of his feet. This torture was carried out while Behrouz was in his solitary cell.

His bail amount of US$300,000, is unprecedented and it is impossible for his family to pay it. This amount is unheard of for a bail in Iran and it is believed that the bail has been set intentionally high so that his family cannot afford it. His family was told that should the bail not get paid, Behrouz will be transferred to a prison for criminals very soon. Iran’s judiciary authorities have announced that the government cannot protect his safety after his transfer to such a prison. His family believes that this is a conspiracy to have him killed by criminal inmates.

Also, I have been informed that the life of Peyman Piran is seriously in danger. He has been imprisoned since December and has endured brutal medieval torture techniques and his health condition is very bad. Peyman’s right shoulder and leg are badly damaged due to constant brutal torture. Farhad Haji Mirzaie, a member of the Association for the Protection of Children’s Rights and a founding member of the “Association of Defence” of Political Prisoners and Human Rights in Iran, has been subjected to severe and systematic punishment and torture in an attempt to force him to confess to fabricated allegations. While in jail, his residence was raided by the security forces and his personal belongings were taken away.

Ali Kantoori, a famous activist leader who was abducted off the street by government agents, is in a bad condition. His rib cage has been broken down under torture. Because he refused to accept what under interrogations was asked him to confess, he has replaced to another prison ‐Ghezel Hesar ‐ as punishment. He remains in a cell in very critical condition. Ali suffers from illnesses and he is denied medical treatment. The government does not allow Ali’s family to provide any bail for him. Ali’s family has been advised that Ali must be imprisoned unconditionally.

We desperately need to raise money to provide bail for our comrades Behrouz Karimi-zadeh and Peyman Piran and we need INTERNATIONAL support to release from danger of death our comrades Farhad Haji Mirzaie and Ali Kantoori. The “Freedom and Equality Seeking University Students” have published an account number in their official website to provide our comrades bail. Let’s to prevent another human tragedy at the hands of the Islamic Republic against OUR COMRADES, the Iranian Student activists.

Name: K.H 
Sort Code: 40-04-37
Account Number: 01568604
Bank: HSBC
Iban: GB85 MIDL 400 4370 1568 604
Adress: HSBC, Muswelhill Broadway, London

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Mahmoud Salehi has been released!

Mahmoud Salehi, the head of the Bakers' Union in Saqez, was released this past weekend!
Congratulations to all who campaigned on his behalf!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Stop the Deportation of Pegah Emambakhsh

The UK Home Office is attempting to deport Pegah Emambakhsh. If she is sent back to Iran she will face severe persecution, even death.Pegah Emambakhsh is an Iranian national who sought asylum in the UK in 2005, as she faces persecution in Iran as a lesbian.Homosexuality is illegal in Iran, pFont sizeunishable by torture, flogging or even execution. Pegah escaped from Iran after her lover was arrested, tortured and it is feared sentenced to death for conducting homosexual acts. Pegah's father was also arrested, tortured and interrogated about her whereabouts.

Join the campaign and sign a petition in Pegah's defence.

Contact:Friends of Pegah Campaign
c/o Victoria Hall Methodist Church
Norfolk Street
Sheffield S1 2JBUK

Friday, April 04, 2008

On Fitna, the Movie

To see Fariborz Pooya's interview with Maryam Namazie and Bahram Soroush as well as commentaries by ex-Muslims and others on Iranian Secular Society TV, click here .