[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM Persian]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]

 

[Newspaper:] Iran Times Beinu’l-Mellali

[Date:] Friday 3 Esfand 1363 [22 February 1985]

[Issue No:] 692

[Page:] 5

 

Hashemi Rafsanjani:

“Baha’is, as Teachers and at Offices, Serve the Islamic Republic”

 

Tehran – News Service of the Iran Times: The speaker of the Islamic Consultative Assembly announced that Baha’is are working in the Islamic Republic regime as teachers and in some departments. “Nobody bothers them.” He said, “Baha’is do not interfere with the Islamic Republic, and they are also serving”.

 

Hashemi Rafsanjani, speaker of the Islamic Consultative Assembly and representative of Ayatollah Khomeini at the Supreme Defence Council, answering [a] national and international journalist in a recent interview, replied to the Japanese News Service “Kio Do”, who asked him about the Hojjatieh Society, “They are not formally active under the title of Hojjatieh Society; their members might want to express their opinions, but these people are not bad enough to be punished.”

 

Hashemi Rafsanjani, pointing to the background activities of the Hojjatieh Society during the last regime, indicated, “Previously, and before the triumph of the Revolution, these people were not fond of combat, and in fact were against it. During the Pahlavi regime, they were of the opinion that they should be satisfied to [remain] within the limited possibilities of mosques and schools at the disposition of the Muslims and only speak of worship and ethics.”

 

The representative of Ayatollah Khomeini, at the meeting of the Supreme Defence Council, said, “Those who were not cooperating with the Revolution and whose intention was not in line with the Leader of revolution, could not proceed with their activities as a group.” He said, “After Ayatollah Khomeini speech about the Hojjatieh, ‘because they were Muslims, they stopped their activities’.” He reiterated that the Hojjatieh Society [however] never stated “its clear dissolution”; nevertheless, he said, “After they announced they would stop [their activities], we do not have any news of their organizational activities and political movements.”

 

Later on, Hashemi Rafsanjani set forth the previous relationship of the members of the Hojjatieh Society in facing the Baha’is, and said, “Principally, their main goal during the time of the shah was confronting the Baha’is. Because the Americans were in power and Baha’ism is an American-Israeli movement, the Baha’is had a much wider ground of activity.”

 

The speaker of the Consultative Assembly said, “During the previous regime, the Hojjatieh Society used [the phrase] ‘battle of convenience’ with the Baha’is, pointing to the fact that Dr. Ayadi was ‘the shah’s personal physician’ and ‘some of the ministers were Baha’is during the time of the shah’.” He said, “The members of the Hojjatieh Society did not oppose the shah himself”, and added, “They used to think that they could confront the Baha’is; we did not agree and believed that this was wrong.”

 

The speaker of the Legislative Assembly of the Islamic Republic said, “Baha’is do not have any ground within the regime of the Islamic Republic.” Addressing [the fact] that “the main organization of the Baha’is in Iran has been ended,” he said “Many of them are presently busy working in the regime of the Islamic Republic; either they are teachers or are working in other departments. No one bothers with them and they are not making any trouble for the Islamic Republic; in fact, they are serving [their country] too.”