On Tuesday, they held a rally outside the government buildings in Kohkilaviye & Boyer Ahmad, where they spoke out about working conditions. In addition to not receiving fireproof clothing, the workers had not also received their paychecks for 8 or 9 months.
Saber Farkhiani, a worker at this factory amongst the protesters, told the Regime-affiliated ISNA news agency: “If we had safety uniforms, our colleagues would not have been injured, or maybe just slightly. The workers lacked the necessary safety and hygiene conditions… The safety helmets are very poor in quality and similar to those in construction projects. Why should a worker in a steel factory standing alongside a huge furnace not have proper clothing, boots, masks, goggles and gloves.”
Another worker asked: “Why should we have to work with sandals next to the furnace?”
This is far from the first time that similar rallies have been held, specifically relating to this factory. They have protested many times over the past three years, because of lack of payment, unsure working status, and lack of safety equipment.
Another worker said: “This factory lacks any safety personnel during the night shift and there are no first aid kids at all… The workers at this factory are paid like any other ordinary worker.”
Kamil Samsami, another factory worker said: “The workers would not have suffered at all from the explosion if we had safety and fireproof clothing.”
The Regime, in order to distance themselves from any blame, is claiming that the factory was privatised. However, often when the Iranian Regime privatises a company, they really just put it in the hands of their terror squad, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC).
Fattah Mohammadi, deputy governor of Kohkilaviye & Boyer Ahmad Province, (southern Iran, said: “All the problems and workers’ demands in this factory will be resolved as soon as possible and their issues will be followed up next week with senior officials.”
The explosion, which injured 66 workers, happened in the early hours of Monday 22 May. Ten workers had to be transferred to hospitals in the cities of Shiraz and Isfahan as they suffered serious burns.
This explosion happened just three weeks after the Yurt Azadshahr mine explosion in the city of Gorgan, northern Iran which left 44 miners dead.