The arbitrary arrest of 60 members of a committee dedicated to upholding workers rights has been condemned by the major UK solidarity organisation campaigning for human rights in Iran.

The Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People’s Rights (CODIR) has been informed that on Friday 15 June at noon, 60 members of the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organisations and a number of other labour activists, were arrested by government agents acting without arrest warrants in the Iranian city of Karaj.
 
Reports  from Iran indicate that the detainees were  transferred to Rajai Shahr prison in Karaj. Although some of those detained were subsequently released, a number of those taken in are still being held without charge in what is seen as a bid to frighten trade unionists and their leaders.
 
Assistant General Secretary of CODIR, Jamshid Ahmadi, has condemned the arrests and warned that further similar actions are likely to take place in the build up to the presidential election in June 2013.
 
“Ever since the stolen election of 2009 the regime in Iran has been running scared of any opposition because they know how much anger there is beneath the surface of society in Iran.  Workers merely attempting to organise to improve their terms and conditions, a basic human right in any democracy, are seen as a challenge to the regime,” said Mr Ahmadi.  “With presidential elections scheduled for next June we have grave fears that this sort of action by the regime will only increase as the regime attempts to intensify the climate of fear in the country.”
 
CODIR has joined the members of the Coordinating Committee to Help Form Workers’ Organisations in condemning the arbitrary  arrest of its members and other workers’ activists.  CODIR demands  the immediate release of all trade union activists and a halt to the arbitrary arrest of any workers.  It further calls for respect for trade union rights in Iran and supportstrades union organisations in protesting against the actions of the Iranian government.