[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]


[Newspaper:] Ettelaat

[Date:] Saturday 10 Azar 1358 [1 December 1979]

[Issue No:] 16015

[Page:] 3


Announcement of the Governor of Western Azerbaijan


Urmia - In the early morning of Wednesday, on behalf of the governor of Western Azerbaijan, this announcement was disseminated.


In the Name of God-


Dear Brothers and Sisters: There are reports that, in one of the Southern cities of the Western Azerbaijan, some people, in the name of Islam, are distributing flyers and sending threatening letters, and forcefully compelling our countrymen to convert to Islam and to obey the Islamic laws.  As these actions are not in line with the behavior of a true, awakened and rational Muslim, and are contrary to the liberating spirit of Islam, these threats, coercions and pressures are against Islamic and religious interests and are considered anti-revolutionary actions.  Therefore with the current situation [requiring] the noble people of Iran under the leadership of distinguished and knowledgeable Imam Khomeini, to rise up to fight irreconcilably with Imperialism, solidarity and collaboration [in the name of Islam] is needed more than any other time.


Islam never progresses with pressure and threat.  Islam is a liberal and liberating religion that develops within a liberal environment and rejects any type of suffocation and coercion.  Now I expect the Muslim brothers and sisters when teaching Islam, to act according to the Quran and Islam. Discussion, sermons and arguments [should] follow Muhammad’s behavior.


Finally I emphasize that, whoever in the name of Islam abuses or behaves contrary to the spirit of Islam, causes insecurity and sedition in the region, and will be persecuted.