This video shows the tragic death of a four-year-old Ahwazi Arab boy who fell into an uncovered sewage manhole during heavy rains in the Khor Mousa neighbourhood of the Ahwazi regional capital in Iran on December 15; tragically the child died before he could be rescued.
Residents of Khor Moussa told Ahwaz Monitor that the four-year-old boy, named as Amir Hussein, was playing in an area near the drain when he slipped and fell into the open manhole, although his father and other local people rushed to attempt to rescue him, they were unable to reach him, with regime rescue personnel not arriving at the scene or recovering the child’s body until several hours after the terrible accident was reported.Although local people in the city and other areas in the Ahwaz region have often complained about the dangers posed by open sewage drains, also including severe public health risks, regime municipal services have been indifferent at best in their response, leaving many sewage drains uncovered. As a result of this negligence, such terrible incidents are not uncommon: this latest tragedy is the third such horrific drowning incident in 2017 alone with a three-year-old girl dying on June 15 after falling into an open sewage manhole in the capital’s and a two-year-old drowning after falling into an open sewage manhole in the village of Darkhween near Falahiyeh on August 9.
Despite much of the region’s sewage network being decades old and broken, defective or malfunctioning, leading to regular blockages and flooding in the winter season, during which whole streets are regularly submerged beneath a tide of stinking effluent, no efforts have been taken to cover the manholes or repair the network.Residents of Khor Mousa confirmed that they had complained frequently to regime officials about the uncovered sewage manholes and broken pipes in the area and the associated dangers and health risk, but said that the municipality had taken no action to remedy the problems, leading inevitably to tragedies like the death of little Amir Hussein.
Many Ahwazi people believe that the regime’s failure to repair the region’s sewage network and its neglect of infrastructure there is simply another manifestation of its unofficial policy of brutal institutional anti-Arab racism, wilful discrimination and deliberate neglect of Ahwazi areas, which have led to much of the Ahwazi population living in conditions of medieval poverty despite the region holding over 95 percent of the oil and gas resources claimed by Iran.