In recent months, an increasing wave of worker strikes in Iran has challenged President Hassan Rouhani and his administration. Workers have gone on strike for several reasons, mostly due to the failure to pay back-payments, at the Haft-Tappe sugar factory, Bandar Imam Petrochemicals, Gilana tile factory and the Assaluyeh natural gas company. The miners' strike at Bafgh in central Iran, however, appears to be a special case.
At Bafgh, 5,000 workers have gone on strike twice. Several workers have been arrested, and the presence of the police indicates that these strikes have become a serious issue, only resolved with the government’s retreat. Yet, these strikes also reveal workers' fears over privatization.