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Tajik Workers Unhappy Over Unpaid Wages From Iranian Firm

The tunnel of Istiqlol in Tajikistan.
The tunnel of Istiqlol in Tajikistan.

Dozens of employees of a major Iranian company working in Tajikistan say they have not been paid for six months.

Jamshed Salimov, a representative of the workers, told RFE/RL's Tajik Service on May 16 that Sabir International hasn't paid the wages of some 60 local employees for the work they did from July to December 2015.

The workers say they were hired with six-month contracts last summer with a monthly salary of about $380 but were never paid.

Tajik government officials put at 30 the number of local workers who have not received their salaries.

The Iranian company has been involved in the construction of the strategic tunnel, Istiqlol, which links Tajikistan's capital, Dushanbe, to the northern Sughd Province.

Hamid Sanei, a deputy head of Sabir International in Dushanbe, said on May 16 that the company has been working to resolve the issue, adding he hoped the "the workers will receive their unpaid wages in the next two to three days."

Sanei didn't say why the wages had not been paid.

The Iranian company last year resumed construction at the five-kilometer-long functioning tunnel that was first begun in the 1980s.