Anti-government demonstrations in Tehran, Kashan and Ardebil

Residents of Bidgol, a suburb of Khashan, (240 km south of Tehran) staged an anti-government demonstration on Monday, September 14, to protest the water situation. When rebuffed by the regime's officials, they began throwing stones at the building housing the Sewage Organization and set fire to one of its loader tractors.

Agents of the State Security Force dispatched to the scene to suppress the unrest fired tear gas canisters into the crowd and attacked the protesters. The enraged residents, who had set several tires on fire to neutralize the effect of the tear gas, charged at them, chanting, "guns, tanks and machine-guns, are no longer effective." They also set a blaze one of the Force's vehicles.

The situation in the city remained tense on Tuesday. Sporadic clashes broke out between the people and the suppressive forces, reinforced with the dispatch of Guards from Kashan. Currently, members of the State Security Force are stationed in the city.

Late last week, hundreds of people living in the Behesht-e Zahra ghetto in the city of Ardebil, northwest Iran, held a protest against the regime. The crowd blocked the highway between Ardebil and Arjestan for 24 hours, preventing all traffic.

Earlier, 1,700 taxi drivers staged a strike in Tehran's Malek street. Agents from the State Security Force and a number paid thugs attacked and beat them up. The agents also confiscated the licenses of a number of drivers.

The deteriorating economic situation, the dramatic rise in general suppression and the expansion of Mojahedin's operation inside the country in recent months have led to an increase in popular uprisings and social protests. The number of such protests in the first five months of the Iranian year tripled compared to the same period last year.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
September 16, 1998

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