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Ahamdienjad speech disrupted by "unemployment" chants


Report by Radio Zamaneh; photos by Arash Khamooshi, ISNA

People of Khorramshahr, a south western city of Iran, disrupted Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speech with chants of "Unemployment! Unemployment!"

Ahmadinejad had travelled to Khoramshahr today for the anniversary of the liberation of the city during the Iran-Iraq War.

Today's protests in Khorramshahr

ISNA reports that protesters also protested during the speeches of the provincial officials chanting "We are unemployed!"

Khorramshahr is a port city in Khouzestan Province in southwestern Iran. It is approximately 10 kilometers north of Abadan. The city extends to the right bank of the Arvand Roud waterway near its confluence with the Karun river. Estimates for the population vary widely between 338,922 (2006) and 624,321 (2005).


Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

ISNA went on to say that Ahmadinejad reacted to these slogans saying: "The government is at your service and with the grace of God with widespread planning the roots of unemployment in the Province of Khouzestan will be destroyed."

People chanting Bikari!" (unemployment!) during Ahmadinejad speech:

Ahmadinejad also said: "The government will work tirelessly alongside the people of Khouzestan until the province reaches is full potential."

Khouzestan struggles with a 25 percent unemployment rate and a growing inflation.

Increasing rate of unemployment due to the closure of small production units and some big factories has raised the concerns of workers and a number of Islamic Republic officials.

Alireza Mahjoub, secretary general of House of Workers, announced in April that two thousand production units are faced with financial crises and every year on average "200 thousand workers" are being laid off.

He went on to add that the government plan to end subsidies will exacerbate this situation.

Iranian Employment Minister announced that Iran's unemployment rate stands at 11.3 percent while The Economist magazine puts Iran's unemployment rate at 13.2 percent.


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