The Iranian Prime Minister, Jaafar Sharif-Emami, has won a vote of confidence in Parliament despite a worsening political crisis and strikes which have halted oil exports.
The Iranian Prime Minister, Jaafar Sharif-Emami, has won a vote of confidence in Parliament despite a worsening political crisis and strikes which have halted oil exports. The vote on Tuesday (30 October) against the two-month-old government was the most difficult test yet faced in Parliament by the Premier, as he grapples with Iran's worst political crisis in 25 years.
SYNOPSIS: The campus at Teheran University his seen several big protests against the Iranian leadership in the past two weeks. Further demonstrations were held on Monday (30 October) and again on Tuesday - the 18th birthday of Crown Prince Rezay who is currently training as an air force pilot in the United States.
As well as in Teheran, there have been mounting disturbances in the provinces, with more than 100 people dying in clashes during the past month. On Monday, while students in the city held a non-violent rally, more than 30 people were reported killed in raids by club-swinging peasants and tribesmen in two towns in Western Iran near the Iraqi border. The attacks were reported to look like a backlash against anti-Government demonstrators. An attack the same day on the small town of Paveh led to eleven deaths. According to Iranian press reports, the attack was led by a local Member of Parliament. Here in Teheran another bank building was severely damaged by fire.
Melli University - like Teheran's other main university - remained open this week, but it was reported than no students were attending regular classes.
At Melli, several thousand students gathered to hold outdoor prayers as a sign of Moslem resistance to the Shah and to commemorate the death of Moslem fighters at the hands of Government troops. At the same time, Radio Iran reported pro-Government demonstrations in several towns.
Troops and police remained nearby but refrained from any action. The Prime Minister has since appealed to Iranians to stay within accepted limits in their protests against the authorities.
Continuing strikes have proved as disruptive as the violent clashes. Industrial action in oil industry centres - such as this one at Abadan, the world's biggest refinery - has halted all oil exports. Iran is the world's second largest oil exporter after Saudi Arabia, and prolonged disruption of exports could seriously affect the world oil industry. The strikes are part of a month-oil wave of stoppages over pay in Iranian Government services. Most economic sectors have been hit. A further serious strike involves staff of the Melli Bank, the country's biggest commercial banking network. And there is no indication of when such action will cease.