Iran: Truckers Launch 4th Round of Nationwide Strike

Two weeks ago, truckers in cities across Iran launched a new round of strikes. Their strikes were in protest for not receiving answers to their demands and also to seek the release of their arrested colleagues. Iranian truckers started that fourth round of strikes based on calls for a nationwide strike on November 1 circulating on social media websites.

iran truckers strike - round 4
Iran truckers strike – round 4

According to Iran News Wire, Truckers were protesting low fares and broken promises from the government. In addition, they demanded the release of detained truckers, arrested during the third round of the strike. In that round, more than 200 truckers were arrested.

Reports indicate that so far, truckers in 10 regions in Iran have joined the strike.

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Videos and images circulating on social media show empty highways in Najaf Abad, Shahroud, Asaloyeh and Shadgan.

It is apparent the truck drivers’ strike has crippled all transportation across the country.

The ILNA state-run News Agency reported that poultry farms were facing problems as a result of the ongoing strikes. According to the report, because truckers refuse to carry goods due to their outstanding problems, poultry farms, which have no chicken feed, are also facing severe shortages.

truck drivers protest in mobarakeh
Truck drivers protest in Mobarakeh.

In Najafabad, central Iran, truckers are on strike according to a previously made announcement encouraging all drivers to park their vehicles and launch a nationwide protest movement.

One driver said at the time that no heavy trucks were seen on the Isfahan road. That meant that all drivers had joined together to send a message to the Iranian authorities.

truck drivers protest high parts cost
Truck drivers protest high cost of spare parts.

The truckers’ strikes in Iran drew international support from the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) which represents 16.5 million transport workers in various transport sectors and Teamsters.

During the last round of strikes which started on September 23 and continued for about 20 days, a court in Qazvin also called for the death penalty against 17 detained truckers in the province.

The ITF condemned “in the strongest of terms,” the call for the death sentence against the 17 Qazvin truckers, in a media release published on its website. Five major unions also condemned the death sentence calls in a letter to Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei.

Hassan Mahmoudi is a human rights advocate and Social Media journalist seeking democracy for Iran and peace for the region.