Mass Public Strikes in Iranian Kurdistan
July 14, 2009, Paris – A one day strike was staged in almost all the Iranian Kurdish cities in the provinces of West Azerbijan, Kordestan, Kirmashan and Ilam in July 13, 2009. The majority of the shops in these cities were closed and Kurdistan went into darkness for three minutes.
Shaho Hussieni, the foreign relations chief of Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (PDKI) said: “This one day strike was planned to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Dr. Abdul-Rahman Ghassemlou and his aides’ assassination and to condemn the terrorist activities of the clerical regime of Iran. PDKI had called upon the people of Kurdistan to go on strike on July 13 a month ago and had asked them to engage in some civil disobediences.”
The regime’s security forces had beefed up security and presence to prevent such a strike. Husseini also points out that “since our call for a Kurdistan-wide strike on July 13, regime’s security apparatus have been intimidating and pressuring the people of Kurdistan to not participate in this strike and avoid performing any activities.” He also adds that “Such pressures were much noticeable yesterday when the regime’s forces assaulted shop owners for closing their shops and broke many locks on stores that did not open on Monday and forced some shop owners to stay in their shops. It is likely that these pressures will continue in the days to come as well.”
The turnout in Iranian Kurdistan for regime’s staged presidential election on June 12 was very low in comparison to other parts of Iran. The PDKI foreign chief adds “Many people in Iranian Kurdistan did not turn out to vote in this election claiming that the election was staged and protested the fact that regime’s elections will not bring about any reforms in the clerical regime and the destiny of the Iranian people and the people of Kurdistan in particular will remain unchanged within this regime. This civil disobedience of the people of Kurdistan can be interpreted as an act of protest against the regime’s policies and existence.”
20 years ago, on 13 July 1989, a legendary Kurdish leader and then the Secretary-general of PDKI, Dr. Abdul-Rahman Ghassemlou and two of his associates were killed by the diplomat-terrorists of the clerical regime in an apartment in the outskirts of the Austrian capital Vienna where they were holding secret talks with envoys sent by then regime’s president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
In spite of credible evidence on the direct involvement of dispatched diplomat-terrorists of the Islamic regime in this tragedy, then the government of Austria sacrificed justice for her country’s political and commercial interests and allowed the three suspected accomplices who had taken refuge in the Iranian embassy after the 1989 killings to slip out of Austria without ever being questioned by the Austrian authorities.
Recently, new convincing evidences have surfaced on the Iranian regime’s involvement, above all Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the current regime’s president in the 1989 execution-style attack obtained from the testimony given to the Italian police by a jailed German arms dealer, who said he had supplied Ahmadinejad with weapons in Vienna shortly before Abdul-Rahman Ghassemlou’s assassination.
Agence-France-Presse reported that “the German, who made his statement to Italian anti-Mafia officers in 2006, said he was in contact with Iranian intelligence services in 1989 regarding arms deals. Shortly before the killing, he said he delivered in the first week of July 1989 half a dozen light weapons at a meeting at the Iranian embassy in Vienna.”
Furthermore, the Associated Press reported that “Peter Pilz, a top official with Austria’s Green Party and its spokesman on security said he wants a warrant issued for Ahmadinejad’s arrest, alleging the president-elect “stands under strong suspicion of having been involved” in the killings of Kurdish politician Abdul-Rahman Ghassemlou and two associates by providing weapons to the Iranian commandos who carried out the slaying.”
Austrian Times also reported that “Pilz claimed there had been two Iranian teams involved in the assassinations – a negotiations team and an execution team. Pilz said Ahmadinejad had been responsible for gathering and preparing the weapons used and had been a member of the execution team.”
Nonetheless, the Austrian officials deem these convincing evidences insufficient to kick-off any investigations fearing retaliation from the Iranian government and severing business ties with the regime of Tehran.