[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]
[Adapted from website:] Tabnak Professional News Site
[Date:] 29 Dey 1387 [18 January 2009]
Arab Media Support for the Baha’is in Iran
Tabnak International Service - Following the arrest of one of the officials in Shirin Ebadi's office, who is said to be a member of the perverse Baha’i sect, some Arab media outlets have investigated the presence of Baha’is in Iran and are protesting and expressing their extreme unhappiness about the violation of human rights in Iran!
Asharq-Al-awsat wrote, “The charge of Baha’ism in Iran is heavier than the charge of drug dealing. Of course, this is because the Baha’is have long used methods of gathering information in each region to gather their followers, and then, with the help of influential people in each region, increase their followers. [They] thus establish a base for themselves in each region… and through their followers would gradually infiltrate all of Iran!
This group was also influential in the Iranian [imperial] court before the Islamic Revolution of Iran, and the remaining Baha’is continue to be loyal to the Iranian monarchy.
Al-Bayan also wrote, “Baha’is in Iran are one of the pillars of the country’s economy, because most of them are engaged in the gold trade and have great influence in the Tehran market.”
This newspaper [said that it] considered the arrest of Jinous Sobhani, a [staff] member in the office of the Defenders of Human Rights Centre in Iran, who worked in Tehran under Shirin Ebadi, the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, to be somehow related to the events in Palestine. Since the Baha’i spiritual headquarters is in Israel (Akka), it is not unlikely that this arrest is related to the events in Gaza!
BBC Arabic also reported on the widespread arrest of Baha’is in Iran, writing, “In recent years, the Baha’is have come under intense political pressure in Iran and the widespread arrests of followers of this sect are a matter of concern. It has created some concerns among the human right groups, and Sobhani’s arrest is in line with that.”
CNN [said that it] considers Ahmadinejad the number one enemy of the Baha’is, adding, “With Ahmadinejad coming to power, widespread arrests, interrogations and imprisonment of Baha’is have increased and it seems there is no place for this proselytizing group in Iran. Of course, this is a continuation of the extermination of the Baha’is in the early days of the victory of the Islamic Revolution of Iran, because in 1979 more than two hundred leaders of this group were executed, thousands more arrested, and all Baha’i employees―reportedly over 10,000―were fired. The Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi is now under political pressure for supporting Baha’is.