The situation in Iran remained tense Saturday as people closed their businesses to show support for protests and students held sit-ins at different universities.
Following the publication of a joint call by seven universities in Tehran to hold gatherings in support of the people of Kurdish regions, the students of Amirkabir, Tehran, Sharif, Beheshti, and some other universities staged sit-ins and strikes.
The student gatherings were held to protest the killing of people in the Kurdish regions of Iran, the arrest of students, and to show support for antigovernment demonstrators.
Workers also played their roleagain to help the protest movement. Reports say the Truck Drivers’ Union called for a nationwide strike while workers at steel and automobile factories also stopped work on Saturday.
Workers at Esfahan Steel Company, Alvand SarmaAfarin Incorporation, Morattab Car Manufacturing, Safe Khodro Car Manufacturing Company, Qazvin’s Pars Appliances Company, and some others staged strikes during the day.
Esfahan Steel Company is a parent corporation with four thousand employees and a producer of construction steel and rails.
The Free Workers' Union announced that welding workers went on strike at Bafaq Steel Complex in Kerman province in central Iran in protest to non-observance of safety measures that led to an explosion and the death of two of their colleagues.
People protesting in the Sattar Khan district of Tehran Saturday evening
In addition to Tehran there were reports and videos of protests in the central city of Esfahan.
A promising news was that Hossein Ronaghi, the imprisoned civil activist, was released from prison on bail and taken to hospital. The dissident blogger and freedom activistwas arrested over his support for protests late in September, and prison guards broke his legs in detention.
He was arrested several times in the past decade and staged hunger strikes in prison. Ronaghi was first arrested along with his brother Hassan in the aftermath of the disputed presidential elections in 2009 for helping journalists and political activists to circumvent internet censorship. He was also charged with insulting Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in his blog posts.
Some state media also reported the release of popular Iranian football player Voria Ghaffouri, who was detained by security forces this week after his critical statements regarding the behavior of the Iranian national team members, criticized for not showing any support for protesters and the families of victims killed by security forces.
However, IRNA news agency denied the reports of his release citing “informed sources.”
In the meantime, hundreds of Iranians abroad expressed support for their fellow countrymen by taking into streets in different cities around the world.
As in the past two months, protest rallies were held today in Paris, Milan, Istanbul, Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö, Berlin, Frankfurt, Aarhus, Budapest, and more.
The protest rally of Iranians in Milan coincided with the International Day for Prohibition of Violence Against Women.
Protesters chanted slogans against the Islamic Republic and demanded an end to the killing of women and children in Iran.
Iranians living in Stockholm, Sweden also gathered in front of the Swedish Parliament to show solidarity with Iranian Kurds and to protest the killings and repression in Kurdish regions.
Hundreds of Iranians living in Istanbul also held a gathering along with a group of women's rights activists.
In this rally, which was held to express solidarity with the Iranian people, the protesters chanted slogans like “From Istanbul to Tehran, I sacrifice my life for Iran” and “Death to Khamenei.”