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Iran: Factory workers in Arak block railway during protest May 21

Factory workers in Arak (Markazi province) block main north-south railway during protest May 21; additional protests possible in the coming days

TIMEFRAME expected from 5/22/2018, 12:00 AM until 5/29/2018, 11:59 PM (Asia/Tehran). COUNTRY/REGION Arak (Markazi province)

Event

Factory workers from a HEPCO plant in Arak (Markazi province) staged a protest on Monday, May 21, blocking the main north-south railway in the city. Approximately 900 HEPCO workers participated in the blockade on Monday, five days after residents agreed to end demonstrations if their demands were met by the government. Additional protests, railway blockades, and consequent rail transportation disruptions are possible in Arak in the coming days until the government satisfies the protesters' requests. A heightened security presence is expected near potential additional protests.

Context

Workers from HEPCO - a manufacturer of road construction equipment - have organized numerous protests in recent months in frustration over unpaid wages and perceived lack of job security. They are also demanding that the government retake control of the company.

Iran has witnessed a multitude of protests over various grievances in cities across the country since December 2017. In recent weeks, protests and strikes have been held in cities throughout Iran over water issues, insufficient wages, political prisoners, border closures, political administration issues, poor university administration, and mismanagement of financial institutions.

Advice

Individuals in Iran, particularly in Arak, are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.

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