[Newspaper:] The Wall Street Journal

[Date:] Tuesday, 12 January 1982


The fate of one Iranian minority

A front page "World-Wide" item Dec. 31 reported the execution of the eight members of the National Baha'i Assembly of Iran. This unconscionable attack upon the national governing body of Iran's 500,000-member Baha'i religious minority is only the latest episode in the systematic effort by government officials to eradicate the Baha'i community of Iran, the birthplace of the faith.

Over the past two years, some 100 Baha'i leaders – including physicians, nurses, businessmen, and educators – have been executed or assassinated. Thousands more have been dismissed from their jobs and driven from their homes. Baha'i-owned properties and shrines, along with the personal assets of Baha'is, have been confiscated. Rank and file Baha'is have been subjected to summary arrest, kidnap, the deprivation of livelihoods and educational opportunities, and other cruel intimidation tactics aimed at forcing them to recant their faith. In support of these dastardly actions, authorities have leveled such spurious charges against the Baha'is as supporting Zionism, promoting prostitutions, "fighting God and His Messenger," "creating discord and disunity amongst Moslems," and promoting "corruption on earth." No evidence has ever been produced to support these trumped up charges.

Wherever they reside, Baha'is observe loyalty to their government and eschew all partisan political activity as articles of their faith. The defenseless Baha'is of Iran can only appeal to the conscience of the world in the ardent hope that Iranian authorities will be persuaded to end this reign of terror.

Parks Scott

Baha'i Public Affairs Office

Wilmette, Ill.













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