Workers at the Fajr Petrochemical Plant refused to work on Tuesday January 21 after management refused to allow the workers’ representative to enter the plant premises.

Abbas Rezai, the workers’ representative, spoke to the Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA) last October about worker protests. According to an unidentified worker, management was angered by Rezai’s interview with the media regarding worker discontent over bad working conditions so they barred him from the plant.

Workers have been protesting management’s refusal to meet an earlier commitment to increase pay and benefits by 23 percent.

Management has stated that its rejection of Rezai is unrelated to his interview with the media.

ILNA has previously reported that employers are taking harsh measures against workers who provide the media with information about labour conditions and protests.