[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

 

[Letter]

Sir, as you are aware, according to the Constitution, all the citizens of the country are considered as equal before the law. The same law safeguards the residence, the properties, the honour, the reputation, and the dignity of all the inhabitants of the country from any invasion or harassment. Although the government of Iran has affixed its seal of approval to the Charter of the United Nations, under the present unfavourable conditions of the country, unfortunately, elements who have no regard for the laws, nor pay attention to the dignity and honour of human beings, attack the human rights [of others] by all means.

All the oppressed Baha’is of Miandoab, whose number is estimated at hundreds of families, based on their religious belief, wholeheartedly respect the holy country of Iran and love all the Iranians.  From 11:00 a.m. on 9 Dey 1357 [30 December 1978], these people were exposed to the attacks of the destructive mobs who pulled these wronged ones [Baha’is] out of their homes, and looted their properties and furnishings, which are estimated to be [worth] two million rials. The attackers either ransacked the belongings of the properties or set them on fire. They completely destroyed their places of business and took their contents, and also completely burnt their religious buildings—[the Baha’is] have lost everything and all their livelihood.

They attacked with extreme hatred and savagery and murdered two innocent [members] of this wronged group. They did not stop there, but tied ropes to two corpses and paraded them in the streets on every corner and then mutilated their bodies with axes and other killing tools, and finally burned them. 

These destructive elements were guided by known individuals; before the incident, the Baha’is of Miandoab, due to the [hate speech] and propaganda of some clergy, had become alert to the possibility of dreadful events [that were] unfolding. Therefore, they had notified the offices of the security forces, including the police and others, in writing and verbally.

Sadly, although aware of the [certainty] of what was coming, and recognizing the gravity of the situation, none of the offices did anything to prevent it. On the day of these events, the area where things happened was vacant—there were no soldiers, gendarmes or police officers to prevent what happened. These atrocities, which are completely contrary to the human spirit and [Iranian values], were then committed by this malicious group.   

The Baha’is of Miandoab, and all Baha’is in the holy country of Iran, are forbidden to participate in political affairs. They are well-wishers of the nation of Iran and its sincere servants; they believe in Iran and Iranians. You [will] agree that no law, no religion, and no ideology nor creed allows such actions towards these oppressed people. 

Such invasion, destruction, and burning have spread to the surrounding villages and hamlets of Miandoab, where groups of Baha’is have met the same fate. After these heart-rending events, the innocent women and children have become homeless and run away to orchards and empty fields, so that mothers, fathers, and children have no clue where one another are in this winter season, and we have no news of their fate.

[We] request a quick review and the issuance of appropriate instructions in this situation to restore things to the way they were, and to prosecute both the instigators and the abusers who carried out all these atrocities, and to compensate all victims.  

14 Dey 1357 [4 January 1979]

On behalf of the Community of the Baha’is of Miandoab,

Baghaollah Laghaei

Firouz Laghaei    

Ataollah Kaffashi    

Ataollah Nayyeri