For the 37th week in a row thousands took to the streets of Zahedan in the Baluchistan region of Iran June 16, above, to protest repression at the hands of the bourgeois clerical government, despite military helicopters flying overhead prior to the march. The weekly actions there give a boost to fights by workers, women and oppressed nationalities across the country.
“Together we are unbreakable,” was one of the popular chants at the march calling for unity with Kurds, Turks, Lurs, Arabs, Turkmen, Gilaks, Talysh and other oppressed peoples.
The march took place on the eve of the 40th anniversary of the June 18, 1983, execution in Shiraz of 10 Baha’i women, whose only crime was refusing to renounce their faith. The regime refused to even turn their bodies over to their families.
Prominent Sunni cleric Maulana Abdul Hamid — the main spokesperson of the movement in Baluchistan — addressed his supporters in the mosque before the march.
“When I hear such news, I get shocked and ashamed as a human and as a Muslim,” he said. “Baha’is, Dervishes, and Zoroastrians are human beings. All those who live in Iran, including Muslims and non-Muslims, are Iranians, and their rights must be observed.”
“Women who protest in Iran say their dignity and rights must be defended,” Abdul-Hamid added. “Give women their full rights and the rest of the problems can be solved.”
He also commented on numerous reports that police and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have been harassing people across Iran who commemorate the lives of family members killed by the government during the recent protests. “We hear that sometimes anti-riot forces disturb people in cemeteries,” he said. “This is not acceptable.”
On June 16 authorities arrested the father, sister and uncle of Abdolfazl Adinezadeh and sent agents to his tomb the next day to prevent a celebration of the youth’s birthday. The 17-year-old was shot point blank and killed during protests in Mashhad Oct. 8.
On June 14 the Shiite-based Iranian regime announced that it would not allow Abdul-Hamid to leave the country to go on this year’s pilgrimage to Mecca.