Teachers Call For New Protest As Unrest Builds Across Iran

The Iranian Teachers' Unions Coordination Council has called for a new round of street protests to demand higher wages and the immediate release of detained teachers from previous demonstrations as unrest in Iran continues to spread.

The council said in a statement on June 9 that teachers across Iran should hold a protest rally on June 17 after four teachers were arrested last month just ahead of demonstrations held in several cities on May Day, which coincided with Teachers' Day in Iran.

At the May Day demonstration, one of many in recent weeks, teachers protested against working conditions and demanded higher wages.

The teachers also called on the government to speed up the implementation of reforms that would see their salaries more accurately reflect their experience and performance.

"We declare in a loud and clear voice that the union protests will continue unless our colleagues are released immediately and unconditionally, and the demands of teachers are implemented," the June 9 statement said.

The council said it recently wrote a letter to the International Labor Organization that calls for the expulsion of Iran from the organization, stating that since May 1, several union activists and teachers had been arrested on "baseless" charges such as taking actions "against national security."

Iran has seen a string of protests in recent weeks against rising food prices and following a deadly building collapse, which demonstrators blamed on negligence and corruption.


Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has blamed some of the unrest on "foreign enemies" who he says are seeking to overthrow the regime.

Writing and reporting by Ardeshir Tayebi