Save a trade unionist’s life
They don’t get more life and death than this one. Iranian academic and teacher trade unionist Prof Abdolreza Ghanbari is on death row in Iran for “enmity towards God” for receiving unsolicited emails from an armed opposition group, to which he does not belong. You can join an online campaign to oppose his execution and set him and all Iranian trade unionists free.
Just like in Colombia, Iranian trade unionists are often condemned for fabricated connections with armed groups, but in Iran, they do actually get tried. Not before a civil court, which even in Iran would be bound by certain elementary legal standards, but before a special revolutionary court. Hence the common, catch-all charge of “emnity towards God”, which is not a civil or criminal offence but a ‘revolutionary’ one.
Prof Ghanbari, a 44-year-old lecturer of Payam e Nour University, was arrested at his home in Pakdasht on 4 January 2010. He has been sentenced to death has been waiting on death row since the sentence was confirmeds in April 2010. A request for pardon was rejected on February 28 by the Commission of Justice in Tehran. Although he has no political affiliation, he was a teacher union activist until his union, ITTA, was dissolved in 2007.
Education International, the global teachers’ trade union confederation, is working with its affiliate in Iran, the Coordinating Council of Iranian Teachers’ Trade Associations (CCITTA) to call on the Iranian Government to stay the execution of Prof Abdolreza Ghanbari and revoke the death sentence; to drop all charges against all detained trade unionists and release them immediately; to comply with the international labour standards and respect the rights of Iranian workers to freedom of association, assembly and expression. The campaign is backed by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the TUC: Brendan Barber has written to the Iranian Ambassador to Britain and raised the issue with the Foreign Secretary.