Sepideh Moradi, one of the Sufi women who is in the women’s ward of Qarchak Prison, began a dry hunger strike in support of her inmate Sufi woman, Elham Ahmadi. On November 26, Elham Ahmadi, announced the start of a dry hunger strike after being deprived of family visits by the Qarchak Prison Disciplinary Committee.
In support of Ms. Ahmadi, Sepideh Moradi announced the start of her hunger strike with the following letter:
"Now that it is the third day of the hunger strike of my dear sister, Ms. Elham Ahmadi, and the prison officials and their respective authorities have been demonstrating more and more of their hateful nature, and response to the rightful demands of the Dervishes is sometimes with brutality and silence, watching their criminal acts, and sometimes pretending their unawareness, which of course, is a worn-out method and its bad smell is spread everywhere. Now that I have witnessed the death of humanity every second, and all the ways have turned into a dead-end because of the tyranny and arrogance of individuals, I join the hunger strike. And I hope God will forgive me for all the moments that I have closed my eyes to the truth because I was preoccupied with my own daily routine."
Ms. Javaher Agha Maleki, 68, Sepideh Moradi’s grandmother announced a hunger strike in protest to the beating and insulting of Sufi women in Qarchak Prison.
Three detained Sufi women, Shokoufeh Yadollahi, Elham Ahmadi and Sepideh Moradi, were attacked and beaten by an order from the head of Qarchak Prison in Varamin on Monday, November 26. They had asked for the return of their personal belongings seized by prison authorities on June 13. However, they were brutalized by prison agents.
Iran is the only country in the world in which thousands of women have been executed or subjected to torture for being opposed to the regime. Just over the past year, nearly a thousand women were arrested and brutalized in prisons for participating in anti-government protests.
On Sunday Dec. 2nd, the workers of Haft Tapeh sugar mill, located in Shush, in Iran’s Khuzestan province, returned to the streets and resume their protests for the 28th consecutive day. The workers of Haft Tapeh, demand the payment of months-overdue wages and the removal of the private owners of the company who have pushed the company toward bankruptcy. Haft Tapeh is the largest sugarcane factory in Iran and employs thousands of workers. The current conditions of the factory threaten the livelihoods of these workers and their families. The workers are also demanding the release of their arrested colleagues. In recent weeks, instead of responding to the demands of the workers, the Iranian regime’s security forces cracked down on the workers and arrested several of the protesters. On Thursday, security forces attacked the home of one of the members of the workers' syndicate and arrested him.
"Raising the legal age of marriage is contrary to the general policy of the system," said Allahyar Malekshahi, Chairman of the Iranian regime’s parliamentary Judicial and Legal Committee, in an interview with the state-run Fars News Agency, on November 26. Malekshahi said: "A few parliamentarians, whom are mostly female representatives, are seeking to increase the legal age of marriage." He added, "The marriage rates in an early age are not significant."
Yahya Kamalipour, Vice Chairman of the Judicial and Legal Committee, also showed his disregard for increasing the legal age of marriage and said, "The issue of child marriage is not an issue of importance in the country, and the number of people covered by this law is not big enough to require us to reform the law in the country."
Norouzi, a spokesperson for the parliamentary Judicial and Legal Committee, also said, "Those who call these marriages ‘child marriage’ are exaggerating and being extreme. The immediate proposal of this change in civil law will only create uproar."
Dehghani, another member of the Judicial and Legal Committee, said, "Marriage is one of the most personal issues in the lives of individuals, and laws should not have any inappropriate interference in family matters. The marriage age is more of a cultural and religious nature than a legal nature. It is not logical to consider a single version of a ban on marriage for everyone." "Currently, the plan is under consideration in the Committee, and we are opposed to it, because we cannot oppose the sacred Islamic law” he added. (The state-run Fars News Agency – November 25 - 26, 2018)
Girl-child marriage, which is one of the examples of violence against women, has been institutionalized by the Iranian regime by setting the legal age of marriage at 13. According to the regime's officials and experts, some 180,000 girls under 18 years of get married in Iran every year. Only in 2017, the marriages of at least 37,000 Iranian girls between the ages of 10 and 14 have been registered. It has also been reported that there are 24,000 widows under 18, of which 15,000 are under the age of 15.
Female professional athletes in Iran are not supported by sponsors or the government, and are not paid according to their contracts. Mahshid Ashtari, one of the top players on the Iranian Women’s National Ping Pong, has not been able to change her racket for six months and must go through the championship games in Finland with a secondhand racket. She says: "It is difficult for women to attract sponsors, especially if the athlete takes action on her own." Mahshid Ashtiari added, "The representative of Butterfly is a sponsor who does not support very well in Iran. I called its representative in Iran and told them that my situation is different from the rest. I am the top player in Iran. Now I'm having trouble even for my racket which is the most important thing, let alone the rest of the issues. Each racket is close to one million toumans, and for us, who play professionally, it must be changed at least every two months."
Female professional athletes in Iran Fatemeh Amel, the goalkeeper of the women's futsal team in Razavi Khorasan Province said, "We still do not have a sponsor. All of the players are native and have a lot of pressure on them. No player has ever received any money."
The women's futsal team in Razavi Khorasan does not have any specific time and place for training. The disorganized management leads to the failure of many players who have jobs or are studying to participate in the training. Therefore, the wage of the player who is employed is reduced and this is irreparable. If practices are held in the afternoons at a specific time and place so that all players can take part, the training can be held in an organized manner. But unfortunately, there is no system for planning and providing these facilities to female professional athletes in the country. (The state-run ISNA news agency – November 26, 2018)