Friday, March 10, 2006

Report on International Women’s Day Protest in Laleh Park in Tehran

Women’s Rights Association of Iran: Translation by Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi
We commemorated International Women’s Day under conditions of suffocation and subjugation that looms like a black cloud of doom over our Iran; like citizens of other countries around the world, Iranian women of all social classes gathered to observe this festival of freedom. Despite weeks of threats that the regime had launched against us, in an attempt to strike fear and intimidation in everyone’s hearts, bullying all attendees with violence, aggression, arrest and detention, approximately 2000 women and freedom-loving youth who would not be intimidated by this bloodthirsty regime, did show up. READ MORE

Though the protest had been scheduled for 4:30 p.m. most streets leading to Laleh Park, had been blocked by the regimes dark security and disciplinary forces. It was all such that anyone who would have shown up on time for the protest was completely blocked from entering a 3-block radius of the main gate of the park. Oppression dominated the atmosphere so much so that there was simply no opportunity for us to either appreciate our togetherness nor read our manifesto; we were therefore forced to hand out photocopied versions of it to those who were present. We have now posted the manifesto on our site.

Now, the world should realize that the instability of the rule of these existent potentates is evident when they show such fear of a group of women gathering to celebrate International Women’s Day in a park; they exposed their horror by going to any lengths to intimidate and prevent this observance and instead of respecting and celebrating the honor of women by greeting us and bestowing flowers upon us, we were met with batons, mace, insults and abuse. The despots had also corralled as many revolutionary guard, basiji, hoodlums and knife-wielding thug in order to maximize the intimidation factor. They arrested dozens of people and confiscating all cameras, they would throw them to the ground crushing them under their feet. They even prohibited the media and journalists who were in attendance from photographing or interviewing the protestors.

When the ladies and the student leaders began singing our nationalist anthem, Ey Iran, the regimes guards stormed the protestors, severely beating them; some had electrical batons that the regime has imported from China, and they indiscriminately whacked the ladies…women of all ages. These misogynists should grasp the fact that not only do we not fear them, but this behavior only fuels our fire to continue our fight for freedom.

We would like to apologize for not getting the report of our protest out to you dear friends, around the world; our excuse for this is that subsequent to the arrest of dozens of our friends, we have done everything we could gather information on their whereabouts and conditions. Here now are several reports from fellow members of those who were witness to the chain of events.

Watch the video clips of: ladies singing and chanting songs of freedom, Security guards start to gather, Security guards start attacking... attacked and chased by security guards.