By Jubin Katiraie
Iran has seen protests across the country in the past few days, following the Free Iran Global Summit 2020, with people rightly angry at the regime for various reasons and demanding their rights.
In Qeshm, southern Iran, storeowners held a protest and march on Sunday over the decision by local officials to close the city customs and leave deliveries at the port, which is causing many items to spoil (as is the case with foodstuffs) or be damaged.
One shop owner said: “I purchased merchandise from India back in February and the goods have arrived. However, they have closed down the customs due to the novel coronavirus. The Dubai customs opened just one week after being closed down due to Covid-19. The customs in Iran, however, remain closed. The store owners in Qeshm are in very poor conditions. Covid-19 has ruined the market and on the other hand, they are holding people’s ordered merchandise at the customs.”
That same day, residents of Dab Heradan village, Khuzestan, held a rally outside the Khuzestan governorate office to protest that their homes lack running water and that officials had not fulfilled their promises of ensuring that the people there have an adequate water supply.
One person said: “We have suffered much hardship and the village officials refuse to provide a decent answer to our questions. Currently, we are forced to travel many kilometers to reach an area near the city of Ahvaz and purchase our water from there.”
While it would, of course, be inhumane for any part of any country to be without an adequate water supply, given that it is a foundation for all life on earth, but Dab Heradan is right in the middle of one of Iran’s most water-rich provinces. How can the people there not have water to drink, bathe, wash clothes and dishes, or flush the toilet? How can the farmers not have water to put on their crops or give to their animals?
On Saturday, employees of the Beheshti Hospital in Shiraz, south-central Iran, rallied outside the building to protest having not received a 50% raise for their exceptionally hard work during the pandemic, which has been given to employees of hospitals under the direct supervision of the Health Ministry.
They chanted: “Unqualified officials, resign, resign!”
The Iranian government’s wrong economic policy and institutionalized corruption have led to extreme poverty for all the Iranian people from all walks of life. These economic hardships have been widely protested by people. In fact, the nationwide Iran protests in November 2019, was erupted due to the sudden fuel price hike.