Iran’s Judiciary Prevents Top Labor Activists From Attending International Conference


06/17/17

Iran’s Judiciary Prevents Top Labor Activists From Attending International Conference

Source: Center for Human Rights in Iran

A travel ban imposed by the Iranian judiciary has prevented prominent labor
rights activists 
Reza
Shahabi
 and Davoud
Razavi
 from attending an international labor conference in Switzerland, the
Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) has learned.

The two senior members of the Tehran
Bus Drivers Union
 (TBDU) were unable to attend the 106th session of the
International Labor Organization in Geneva on (June 1-13, 2017) despite
receiving invites.

Hassan Saeedi, a member of the TBDU’s board of directors, was the only union
representative able to attend the conference, according to a statement from
the organization published on June 12.

An informed source told CHRI that Shahabi remains prohibited from travelling
outside Iran despite recently completing his prison term while Davoudi was
banned from traveling in a preliminary trial. The men were both prosecuted for
their peaceful, lawful trade union activities. 

In June 2010, Branch 15 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court sentenced Shahabi to
six years in prison for “propaganda against the state” and “assembly and
collusion against national security.” He was released on September 23, 2014 for
medical reasons. 

Davoudi was sentenced to five years in prison and banned from traveling in
February 2016 by Branch 26 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court for “acting
against national security” and “disturbing peace and order.” He remains free
while awaiting a hearing at the Appeals Court.

Labor activism in Iran is seen as a national security offense; independent labor
unions
 are not allowed to function, strikers are often fired and risk
arrest, and labor leaders are consistently prosecuted under
catchall national security charges and sentenced to long prison terms.

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