The Iranian regime’s criminal policies against the Ahwazi people have been continuing for several decades, starting from the Ahwazi occupation day that was started by the Shah in the mid-twenties of the last century and continuing with the current Mullahs regime.
The demographic changes and mass land confiscation of Ahwazi people in the north of Al-Ahwaz (i.e. north of Khuzestan province, thousands of agricultural hectares located between Khuzestan and Ilam provinces and south Ilam province), rarely been focussed on by the activists due to several reasons such as tight security measures imposed against Ahwazi people by the Iranian occupation regime, that resulted in the lack of information to be documented and published for international organization defending human rights.
The signals of the land confiscation and demographical changes in the north of Al-Ahwaz been triggered to international media when the Ahwazi people welcomed the year 2018 with a massive uprising that began at the end of 2017, which is known as the “uprising of the land” that ignited in solidarity with the people of the village of “Al-Jalizi” in the “Dachat Al-Abbas (in Arabic pronunciation) (“Cheshm Khosh” (in Persian pronunciation) region when the Iranian IRGC and Army seized thousands of Ahwazi agricultural lands in the “Dachat Al-Abbas region.
However, the Ahwazi people of the “Al-Jalizi” village responded courageously to the Iranian land confiscation. The Ahwazi women had a prominent presence in the face of criminals and invaders. The Iranian security forces have arrested many villagers and imprisoned them for participating in demonstrations against their land confiscation. This uprising continued for several weeks.
The following videos are from the “Al-Jalizi” village demonstration on the 5th of December 2017.
The “Al-Jalizi” region land confiscation has carried out by the Iranian Army-dependent organization “ETKA”, claiming ownership of the land, took advantage of the government status as well as the cooperation of security forces attacked women and men who were working on the ground by using tear gas and batons intended to expel farmers from their agricultural lands.
The “ETKA” organization has previously confiscated more than 4,000 hectares of Arabs’ farming land. Only 1,000 hectares remained in the ownership of the people to which the organization has recently claimed ownership.
The main reasons for the Ahwazi land confiscation by the Iranian regime are demographical changes and oil exploration. There are several gigantic oil fields such as “Paydar”, “Dalperi”, and “Cheshm Khosh” that have been discovered so far. In terms of demographical changes, the Iranian regime looks at the Ahwazis as a threat to its national security and must be migrated, especially when they are lived nearby oil fields.
Ahwazi people in the north of Al-Ahwaz (i.e. north of Khuzestan province, thousands of agricultural hectares located between Khuzestan and Ilam provinces and south Ilam province) are not farming all their agricultural land due to the mass mines left from Iranian – Iraqi war in the eighties of last century and the IRGC forces have started a project to demining the Ahwazi land, but the Ahwazi people were shocked when they see their land after demined, it’s been given to non-Arab or to the IRGC personnel( current personnel or retired). Ahwazi people in the north of Al-Ahwaz saying that “after our land demined, we were hoping to get our land back, but it has been given to IRGC personnel with Kurdish ethnicity.”
The Iranian regime’s racial discrimination is ongoing against Ahwazi people in which Arab people are forbidden from digging water wells for drinking purposes or feeding their livestock from water well as well as grazing livestock except in specific places. In contrast, the Iranian criminal regime allows Kurdish ethnicity to dig well everywhere and graze livestock on any agricultural land.
Due to the presence of mass mines, the agricultural land has been divided into two sides, one with mines and the other demined, no one is allowed to enter the lands with mines, and for the demined land, there is a police checkpoint at the entry and preventing Ahwazi people from digging wells or grazing livestock and allowing only people with Kurdish ethnicity.
The Ahwazi people in the north of Al-Ahwaz are prevented from farming for successive years and the only allowed agriculture is when they farm and provided water from rain. Ahwazi people that banned from farming and grazing livestock and finally banned from digging a water well are forcibly migrated to other cities to survive.
Ahwazi tribes that are living the north of Al-Ahwaz are “Al-Jalizi”, “Albo Hamdan”, Sarkheh”, Kananeh” and “Kaab Hassan” and several other tribes.
Oil field discovering
There are several oil fields been discovered by Chinese oil-related companies, and thousands of oil barrels have been exported from the north Ahwazi region.
“West Paydar” oil field is located in Southeast of “Dehloran” city, has extensive oil reserves, where %20 of the reserves is located in the Iranian soil and %80 located in the Iraqi soil.
After the previous Iraqi regime collapse in 2004, the Iranian regime took advantage of the Chinese oil-related company “DDDC”, which specializes in horizontal drilling and digging, and now the regime has complete (%100) access to the “West Paydar” oil field. ‘DDDC” company has a main HQ office in Tehran and a second office located in Ahwaz capital (full address available).
“West Paydar” oil field produced 25000 barrels per day between 2007-8 and currently producing more than 50000 barrels per day.
“Cheshm Khosh” oil field
“Cheshm Khosh” oil field is another oil field that has been discovered in the north Ahwazi region. All the oil fields are under the control of the Iranian national oil company. The “Cheshm Khosh”, “Dalperi” and “East Paydar” oil field has been given to Chinese companies for 25 years contract under the “IPC” deal.
A Spanish oil-related company named “CEPSA” has conducted a survey to estimate the “Cheshm Khosh” reserves and gave an estimate of two billion and 240 million oil barrels available in the “Cheshm Khosh” oil field.
Ahwazi activists believe that the intention of the Iranian occupation regime to give the Ahwazi land to non- Arab and predominantly Kurdish ethnic people is to increase the conflict and struggles between Ahwazi and Kurdish people in the current regime and after its collapse.
Ahwazi Centre for Human Rights