Poet and journalist Arash Ghaleh Golab has not been allowed to contact his family since he was arrested on May 26, during a protest over the recent collapse of a building in the Iranian port city of Abadan.
Ghaleh Golab was violently arrested by security forces during a state crackdown on protests and remains in detention while suffering from acute respiratory illness and diabetes.
In a statement on June 1, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) expressed concern over his arrest.
CPJ said that a “source familiar with the case” said that officers hit Ghaleh-Golab “with their fists and kicked him” during his arrest, adding that he is being detained without charge at an undisclosed location and not being allowed to contact his family.
May 2022 saw the Iranian regime ratchet up social clampdown in step with the growing discontent and the spread of popular protests.
Iranian authorities intensified their crackdown on society amid protests against rising prices.
Security forces arrested dozens of teachers in the four days leading up to international workers’ day, between April 28 and May 1, 2022.
Peaceful rallies were held in many Iranian cities on May Day, which coincides with International Workers Day and Teachers’ Day in Iran. The regime imposed tight security measures in several cities to prevent the protests from spreading.
In some cities, rallies turned violent with police and security forces attacking and beating demonstrators. Dozens of teachers and educators were beaten and detained.
May was also marked by widespread protests in various provinces, including Khuzestan, Lorestan, Fars, and Tehran.
A new round of protests in Iran started on May 5, after the government removed subsidies on basic food items which have sent prices skyrocketing including the price of non-traditional bread, flour, dairy products, cooking oil, poultry, and eggs.
Reports say the protests spread to at least 31 cities.
Authorities resorted to violence to quell the protests. At least six protesters were killed by security forces amid a violent state crackdown on the protests, while the authorities blocked internet access in the unrest cities.
The slain protesters are Pish Ali Ghalebi, Omid Soltani, Hamid Ghasempour, Saadat Hadipour, Jamshid Mokhtari Junghani, and Behrooz Eslami.
Security forces resorted to widespread arrests to counter the protests. There have been reports of hundreds of arrests in Izeh (Khuzestan Province) alone and 50 in the city of Shahr-e Kord (Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari Province).
Numerous labor, civil and political rights activists have been arbitrarily arrested.
Food protests in Iran triggered last week by a sudden hike in prices of essential goods were violently repressed with security forces using lethal force
A new wave of nationwide protests was triggered last week by a cut in state subsidies for imported wheat that caused price hikes of as much as 300% for a variety of flour-based staples.
The prices of essential goods including bread, milk, dairy products, eggs, poultry, and cooking oil have also risen sharply amid Iran’s 40-percent inflation rate.
The cities of Andimeshk, Dezful, Izeh, Droud, Shahrekord, Junqan, Yasuj, and Neishabour were among areas hit by protests over skyrocketing prices of food staples.
All sectors of Iranian society are being crushed under soaring inflation, rampant unemployment, meager wages, and widespread water shortages, as well as the Iranian regime’s repressive policies.
Speaking on May 9 on state television, Raisi pledged that the price of traditional bread, gasoline, and medicine would remain unchanged.
In order to compensate for the rise in prices, Raisi said direct payments equivalent to approximately $10 or $13 would be disbursed for two months for each family member of low-income households. Later, he said Iranians will be offered electronic coupons that would allow them to access a limited amount of subsidized bread.
Reports suggested that the price of cooking oil had almost quadrupled since Raisi’s announcement, while the price of eggs and chicken nearly doubled.