[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]

 

[Adopted from website:] Radio Farda

[Date:] 29 Azar 1384 [20 December 2005]

 

The Mysterious Death of a Baha’i in Yazd Prison: Interview with the Spokesperson for the Baha’i Community

According to the Baha’i International Community, Zabihollah Mahrami died in Yazd Prison on 24 Azar 1384 [15 December 2005] for unknown reasons. He had initially been sentenced to death, but under international pressure and the media, his sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. In an interview with Radio Farda, Diane Alai, the spokesperson for the Baha’i Community, said, “He had no history of heart disease or other illness, and that is why we were worried.”

During these ten years in prison, he endured lots of suffering. He was also given some hard-physical work and was only imprisoned for being a Baha’i. Mrs. Alai says more than 200 Baha’is have been killed in Iran since the Revolution, but this is the first case of death in prison.

A Baha’i prisoner died in Yazd Prison for unknown reasons. According to the Baha’i International Community, Zabihollah Mahrami, who was jailed in [1374] 1995 for blasphemy, died in Yazd Prison on 24 Azar [15 December]. Mr. Mahrami died at the age of 59 in poor physical condition. He had initially been sentenced to death, but under international pressure and the media, his sentence was converted to life imprisonment.

In an interview with Radio Farda, Diane Alai, a spokesperson for the Baha’i Community, said of the cause of death of Zabihollah Mahrami:

Diane Alai: We first heard that he had had a heart attack, but it is not known at all, and in any case, he did not have a history of heart disease or other diseases, and that is why we were worried. During these ten years in prison, he suffered very much. He was also given some hard-physical work and was only imprisoned for being Baha’i. So, there was no reason for him to have such hard physical work and pressure.

Maryam Ahmadi (Radio Farda): Had he never complained of a particular physical problem during the meetings he had with his family?

Diane Alai: No physical problem at all. His complaint was that the work they were given in prison was difficult, but not that he had any illness or diabetes or any other illness, at all.

Maryam Ahmadi: You said that more than 200 Baha’is have been killed in Iran since the Revolution. Were they all executed?

Diane Alai: Most of them were executed. At the beginning of the Revolution, some of them [died] in other ways—killed in their homes, or assassinated in groups—but the majority, yes, were executed.

Maryam Ahmadi: Is this the first case of death in prison?

Diane Alai: Yes, this is the first time we have [received] such information.