By Iran Probe Staff
Wednesday, 4 April 2018
Hundreds of exasperated farmers of Varzaneh, east of the ancient city of Isfahan gathered outside the local state office in centre of Isfahan. They protested the water shortage created by government’s plundering policies. Participants in the demonstration included many farmers in their sixties and seventies. Several demonstrators carried their shovels or rode their tractors.
Protests began in early March. Farmers, mostly from Varzaneh, gathered outside the office for water resources and marched towards the local state buildings. They were angry blaming the government for the shortage of water. Not only in Isfahan but in most parts of Iran land owners affiliated to the IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps) and the Ayatollahs have built illegal dams on lakes and rivers to divert water to use in their own private plantations. As a result some of Iran’s water resources, such as the river Zayanderud that goes through Isfahan, are now totally dried. Areas in east of Isfahan have a population of 300 thousand people and now almost 50 thousands farmers are without water and have lost their jobs.
Farmers’ demonstrations started in the first week of March and still continues. Protestors from Varzaneh shouted slogans such as, “farmers are begging for water while officials live in luxuries” and “we won’t give in until we get our rights”. In some occasions state security forces attacked farmers causing some injuries. Farmers from the surrounding villages came to the help of their colleagues. In Egeie, a nearby village, fight between people and the suppressive government forces lasted for hours. Youth used wooden clubs and set old tyres afire to defend themselves. They threw stones at the guards and forced them to retreat some of government agents were injured.
Mrs Maryam Rajavi, leader of Iranian resistance, hailed the risen farmers in east of Isfahan and called other people and especially the youth to rush to the help of protesting farmers of East Isfahan, in particular, those injured by the suppressive forces.