Refugees, particularly Eritreans, landing in Libya face a grim reality of trafficking, enslavement, and widespread abuse, including sexual violence, often to extort ransom payments from their families. Those who manage to escape from detention centers and reach the Mediterranean face the risk of interception and forced return to Libya or death at sea. These conclusions are drawn from research published in a book published on January, titled “ENSLAVED. Trapped and Trafficked in Digital Black Holes: Human Trafficking Trajectories to Libya”.
In the 1980s, following the Iranian Revolution, a wave of repression and violence was directed against leftist political opponents by the newly established Islamic Republic. This included the execution of many left-wing political prisoners, who were seen as threats to the new regime. The exact number of political prisoners executed during this time is unknown, but it is estimated that thousands were killed. The executions were carried out in a number of prisons across the country and were often accompanied by widespread torture and other forms of abuse.
A large crowd of beneficiaries of international or subsidiary protection have not been able to renew their residence permits, and are only receiving a 6-month certificate confirming that their renewal is pending. This can cause serious problems in many areas, including employment and insurance. Although they have these certificates, many refugees have complained that they are taken to police stations and held for hours while the police claim to be checking their validity.
To date, they have received 200 signatures from over 20 countries. Signatories include individuals from various professions such as academics, doctors, lawyers, journalists, and artists, as well as representatives from trade unions, political and associative organizations.
On October 15th, a tragic event occurred at Evin prison in Iran, one of the country’s most feared facilities. Despite the passage of three months, the exact details of what happened remain a mystery, as independent investigations are not permitted in the Islamic Republic. Among the prisoners held at Evin are political dissidents, ordinary citizens, and those arrested for participating in recent anti-government protests.
Mozhgan Keshavarz, an Iranian feminist, was arrested in early 2019 along with two other women’s rights activists, Munirah Arabshahi and Yasman Ariani (mother and daughter), for protesting against the compulsory hijab. Before their arrest, these three had published a video on social media giving flowers to women in the metro without hijab on 8 March. The three were charged with “gathering and coordinating with the aim of acting against national security,” “propaganda against the government,” and “promoting and encouraging prostitution through the promotion of not wearing hijab.”
Waris Ali and Tsiona Nzita are two resent examples of individuals who have died in the refugee camps due to lack of access to medical care. The reason for the death of both of them was the long delay in the arrival of the ambulance.
In the past months of the ongoing revolution in Iran, numerous pictures and videos from different Kurdish cities were published on social networks, which had a more radical political message than what was going on in other parts of Iran. “Long live socialism”, “Long live the council management” and emphasizing the opposition to the centralized government along with the capture of urban facilities to make the voices of the fighters louder.
According to the governor of Tehran, approximately 5 million people live in these neighborhoods around the city, many of whom reside in dilapidated buildings that are at risk of collapsing. While the media is not forbidden from publishing reports on these neighborhoods, they may choose not to do so due to the possibility of being accused of spreading false propaganda against the government or officials.
Why, after more than two months of protests, have nationwide strikes not yet occurred in Iran, and how do the demands of the current uprising for “women, life, freedom” align with those of the working class? To address these questions, we spoke with Parvin Mohammadi, the vice-chairman of the Independent Iranian Workers’ Union. With years of experience in the labor movement and a history of interrogations, arrests, and trials due to her activism, Mohammadi believes that “national labor strikes will happen, but on a different schedule, when this movement becomes wider and involves crowds of thousands in cities.”
A critical study of how Iranian nationalism, itself largely influenced by Orientalist scholarship first undertaken by the European Orientalists of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, has shaped modern conceptions of Iran and Iranian identity, as well as narratives of Iranian history, leading to the adoption of a broad nationalist construction of identity to suit Iranian political and ideological circumstances.
Five protesters have been sentenced to death in an show-court in Alborz province, which had only three so-called hearings and lasted only six days. Sixteen