[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

 

19 Mehr 1358 [11 October 1979]

 

To His Highness Ayatollah Qoddousi, The Public Prosecutor of the Islamic Revolution of Iran, may his sheltering shadow continue,

With utmost respect and praise, [we] would inform your honour of the following. As the esteemed authorities and your own self have previously been informed, the Baha’is, who are considered the largest religious minority in this country, acknowledge the oneness of God and believe in the validity of all His Prophets and the Messengers. They have faith in and testify to the truth of all the Heavenly Books, including the Holy Qu’ran. They [encourage] unity and fellowship with all mankind, they have always obeyed the government and the laws of the land, they constantly endeavour and make every effort to benefit their country through cultural and social acts of service, and they do not interfere in politics in any way. They do not join any political party, do not cooperate with any political factions or groups and do not accept any ministerial, diplomatic, or similar positions. They desire the welfare of all and consider sincere service to the country and people as worship.

Since the first announcement of the Revolutionary Islamic government of Iran, all Baha’is, in accordance with their belief, have proven their loyalty and heartfelt obedience, with utmost sincerity in words and deeds. Unfortunately however, it is observed that in many cases [this] misunderstanding has not been resolved, and some authorities continue to imagine that a Baha’i may commit some acts that he has pledged not to undertake, and God forbid, may take a step against the interests of the state and the nation.

Unfortunately, in some cases, it has been observed that Baha’is are unjustifiably subjected to severe persecution and harm and are condemned simply because of their heartfelt beliefs and Faith [religion]; for instance, the news that has caused the utmost astonishment, surprise and regret for this community these days, is the issuance of the death sentence and execution of Mr. Bahar Vojadani, one of the Baha’is from Miandoab and a resident of Mahabad.

He was a local tradesman who was occupied with buying and selling household furniture and lived with utmost harmony and kindness with the general population for about thirty years and was trusted by everyone. According to the information received, he was summoned to Mahabad Court on the evening of Wednesday, 4 Mehr 1358 [26 September 1979] and after a short interrogation received an absolute discharge and was verbally told to return to the same court at 10:00 a.m. the next day.

As promised, he attended the Mahabad Court on Thursday 5 Mehr 1358 [27 September 1979], at the appointed hour. In the evening of the same day, he was put on trial and immediately sentenced to death; he was executed by the firing squad that same night.

Although Kayhan Newspaper, on 7 Mehr [29 September], announced the reason for his execution as “direct cooperation with the annulled Kurdestan Democratic Party”, as far as this community knows, the above-mentioned, in accordance with his religious belief, could not, in any way, have interfered in such matters. It seems that he was sentenced to death because he did not deny his faith and he confessed and admitted to being a Baha’i. Since this news has greatly worried this community; and moreover, his family, as per the enclosed letter, has insistently demanded the restoration of their dignity and reputation; we hereby convey these concerns and appeal to you to order and issue instructions for a thorough investigation into this matter, so that the truth is revealed and the facts of the matter are determined and the rights of these oppressed ones are procured, so that, firstly, the reputation of that deceased is reclaimed, and secondly, it may become clear and evident, more than ever, that the Baha’is are completely acquitted of such allegations.

 

On behalf of the Baha’i Community of Iran

Dr. Hosein Naji

Manouher Ghaem-Maghami

 

Address – [Redacted]