To:

· Mr. Ahmed Shaheed, Special Rapporteur of the United Nations for human rights in Iran

· Mr. John Knox, the independent expert in the United Nations on human rights and the environment

· Mr. Dainius Pūras: Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health

· The Amnesty International

· The Human Rights Watch

· Organizations defending human rights

An Iranian Environmental experts warned that the Ahwaz province (Khuzestan) in southwestern Iran, is about to be evacuated due to severe environmental pollution crisis, which is part of the government’s policies for demographic changes by encouraging the indigenous Ahwazi Arabs to leave their lands.

Mr.Mohammed Darvish, the environment expert and a member of the Scientific Committee for the research center of forest and grassland in Iran, said that the Ahwaz province is prone to be evacuated from its population and complete migration in the next few years due to severe pollution disasters.

The Ahwaz Human Rights Organization (Ahro) believes that policies of demographic changes in Ahwaz and displacement of the indigenous Arabs is continued process. The Iranian authorities adopt arbitrary policies against the Ahwazi Arabs through intentional contamination of the environment to make it impossible to live in the region due to respiratory diseases and serious epidemics resulting from oilfield discharges and petrochemical factories.

The Iranian news agency "Khabar Online" published a report from Mr. Darvish during a seminar titled "What are the implications of changes in the region (Ahwaz) and the increasing the temperature there, in Iran? He added" Khuzestan, which was one of the largest agricultural producers over the past decades with huge oil and gas reserves and holds about 33% of the current water in Iran and the province constitutes as biggest economic hub in the country.

According to the reports published by the Iranian media which ranked the education level in 31 provinces, showed that Khuzestan (Ahwaz) has the worst situation and more than 6000 teaching staff already had left the region and another 6000 want to leave who are not allowed to leave yet. He raised a question what happened in Khozastan (Ahwaz) province where is biggest economic hub in the country which became impossible to live in.

Darvish added "breathing is not comfortable for native people and they do not have even access to drinking water. The pollution rate (EC) has dramatically increased and the air pollution rate of collected sample from the city center on Ahwaz Bridge was 2300 and 3900 in Mohammara (Khorramshar) bridge where these situations have worsen the life there.

The Ahwaz Human Rights Organization condemns the policies adopted by the central government of Iran against the Ahwazi Arab people.

Ahro appeals to the United Nations and all its headquarters, experts, all international bodies and organizations defending human rights, in order to put pressure on the Iranian government, to fulfill its international and legal obligations towards the environment crisis and put an end to the expansion of this disaster against the indigenous people.

Ahwaz Human Rights Organization (Ahro)

5th February 2016

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