[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]
[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets]
[Personal information has been redacted.]
The Honourable Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei
Respectfully, I submit:
“They that are just and fair-minded in their judgment occupy a sublime station and hold an exalted rank. The light of piety and uprightness shineth resplendent from these souls. We earnestly hope that the peoples and countries of the world may not be deprived of the splendors of these two luminaries.”
This is in reference to my repeated letters, pleading for justice, dated 26 Esfand 1368 [17 March 1990], 8 Dey 1370 [29 December 1991], 20 Tir 1371 [11 July 1992], 31 Shahrivar 1371 [22 September 1992], 9 Aban 1371 [31 October 1992], and 2 Aban 1371 [24 October 1992]. As a result of my requests, a tape of my grievances was recorded by a Mr. Hoseini from the Public Office of the Supreme Leader. In order to have a clear conscience and in obedience to your radio statement, in which you said, “Rights are not to be given; rather rights are to be taken”, as a mother and agent of my children, in all seriousness I dare to take up your time and the time of the staff of your organization.
Your Honour, [you,] the great Father of Iran, kindly listened to the tape and read my letters and referred my case to the relevant department for investigation, which resulted in my meeting with two of the respected officers. Those two saw all the documents, including the notifications, letters, thirteen powers of attorney with signatures of the embassy of the Islamic Republic, embossed seals of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Interior, etc. They agreed with my entitlement and asked me to go to the passport office. They made arrangements for me to obtain my passport in order to go for a visit with my children. Honourable Sir, I am extremely grateful to you for having responded to the call of an oppressed mother and provided the means for me to see my children after fourteen years of separation, and after four years of trying to obtain a passport. I have now succeeded in seeing my children and their families. May you be rewarded by God.
I would like to [provide] Your Honour [with a] summary of the events, as the Treasury and wealth of Your Highness and that of Islamic Iran are about to be tarnished as a result of lack of execution of your orders and negligence in reviewing the unjust orders, which are due to [officials’] being too busy and not paying attention. Our only possession, which is my children’s apartment, is about to be sold. Therefore, I feel obliged to inform you, who are sitting on the throne of justice of His Holiness Ali (PBUH) and ruling in the name of God and the true religion of Islam. This way, I hold you, your staff and myself responsible at the Threshold of the One True God.
“Justice, which consisteth in rendering each his due, dependeth upon and is conditioned by two words: reward and punishment.”
I hereby request execution of Article 35 of the Criminal Courts 1 and 2. Honourable Sir, in summary, my husband was Engineer Colonel Seyyed Hosein Vahdat-e Hagh, who had his higher education in Germany and France in the fields of electricity and electronics. At one time he taught at the Military Academy. Mr. Mesbah (Hasan Mohammadi) of the Anti-Corruption Department, arrested him at his Asan Gas Company and took him to the corruption prison. After five months’ imprisonment, he was executed by the order of the Shari’a judge, Mr. Mehdi Tabatabaei. “Verdict: Spy, due to his strong belief in … sect of Baha’ism, and refusal to recant, sentenced to death.” Also, as per a second order from a higher source, “Seyyed Hosein Vahdat-e Hagh Army officer, recipient of fictitious medals, president of a Bahá’í company, one of five members of the Trades and Technology Committee, who trained students for free and sent them to cities―[and] a poem has been found, most likely written by him―if he does not recant, he is sentenced to death.”
Honourable Leader, keeping in mind the fact that “Justice and fairness are as life for humanity”, I implore you to consider what kind of verdict would it be for a spy to be forgiven and set free if he recanted his religion and heartfelt beliefs? My husband did not even agree to utter a white lie as per the instruction of Haji Mehdi Tabatabaei, who told me, “He could tell one small white lie and go home.” Is it not true that a spy’s life and behaviour are filled with lies and deceit? Aren’t the individuals who believe in spiritual worlds and the next life, who know that the outcome of this mortal life is in the next, the ones who would sacrifice their sweet lives for the Creator, and not say a word of untruth?
Honourable Leader, anyone with insight would reject the accusation of spying for someone like my husband. Please observe through the eyes of justice. Aren’t the honest servants of the Islamic Republic being encouraged? Do they not receive medals and promotions for exemplary service to their nation and government? Were my husband’s medals his sins? Asan Gas was a company registered in my husband’s name towards the end of 1359 [early 1981]. My husband was legally working and serving as its president. Was that his sin? Was being one of five members of the Trades and Technology Committee a sin―and as such, an unforgivable sin deserving to be put to death for? What is Your Honour’s perception of the Trades and Technology Committee, to consider it as an unforgivable sin? Are training and teaching trades and technology to young people for free, sins? I hold you responsible in the presence of God Almighty, the sacred religion of Islam and all Great Prophets, and ask you to refer to your heart, soul and conscience to never allow injustice to be repeated again.
The only property of my children is in control of the Execution of Imam Khomeini’s Order―the supreme leader (meaning your Treasury and that of the Islamic Republic) ―and now they plan to sell it. Is not this similar to the acts of execution, plunder and attacks on the rights of Iranian Baha’is? What is this insignificant amount in comparison to the enormous National Treasury? You can issue an urgent order to prevent this, and thus not make yourself to be held responsible in the sight of His Holiness Mohammad (PBUH), and His Holiness Ali (PBUH). I apologize for being unable to hold back my emotions and prevent myself from telling the truth.
Back to the issue at hand. Honourable Sir, Your Excellency, Leader of the Islamic Republic, you and your government officials are aware that at the beginning of the Revolution in early 1358 [early 1979], all Bahá’ís employed in the army were expelled in the first phase, and all pensions of the army retirees were cut off. My husband’s name was one of the 36 in the list that we received. In the following phases, all employees of the government, ministries, semi-governmental companies, universities, and so on, were expelled. I was an employee in education; I used to teach math in schools and high schools in Tehran. I was laid off and my pension was cut off. Then the [Baha’i] National Spiritual Assembly of the time, whose members have all been kidnapped with no sign of their whereabouts, instructed the Trades and Technology Committee to come up with some ideas for those who were laid off. The National Trades and Technology Committee planned courses of three and six months to teach them different auto mechanics, radio and television repairs, plumbing, electrical and gas works, commercial painting, home repairs and so on. Volunteers would come to Tehran from various cities to take the above-mentioned courses. Then Mr. Mesbah arrested my husband.
Honourable Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, [is it a sin] to train a community or teach trades and technology for free? Are protection of a community or supporting the youth, considered sins? Imagine what kind of human beings the Bahá’í community members would have been if they had not been trained and educated by the administration and under the Divine Education to always tell the truth, be honest, trustworthy and obedient to the government―which are the teachings of all Divine Prophets! Would you consider protection and support of the community, especially the youth, which were the responsibilities of the Local and National Spiritual Assemblies and their committees, to be sins? Such unforgivable sins [that they are] punishable by death? My husband was one of more or less 250 individuals who was put to death. Because he was a member of the Trades and Technology Committee? Isn’t the sale of my three children’s apartments at this time―while all the official leadership authorities, the president, the head of the National Investigation Department, Chief Justice Mr. Nayyeri and Tehran Public Prosecutor Mr. Raeisi have all said, “We have nothing to do with Baha’is and do not touch their possessions”―very similar to the actions of several years ago?
Honourable Leader, “Well is it with that learned man whose head is adorned with the crown of justice”. A third order, number 22794, dated 6 Khordad 1370 [27 May 1991], has been issued, ten years after the execution of my husband. This order has not yet been seen by the owners [of the property] or by me, who has been their agent, even though I have referred to several offices―in particular the Office of the Revolutionary Public Prosecutor―and have sought justice numerous times. This order was written under Court number 3 with some signatories, but none of the Sharia judges of Court number 3 have signed it. Only Mr. Hosein Nayyeri, Chief Justice, has signed it. But I am one hundred percent sure that he only signed it routinely, among many other documents, and without reading it, due to the huge volume of his work. He did not realize that none of the Shari’a judges of Court 3 had signed it, nor voted on it.
I read this order once when my telephone line was cut off. My home telephone line, which was in my husband’s name, was cut off once by Mr. Alavi (or Valizadeh), who lived on the third floor of our building. It was returned to me, as there was no order to confiscate our belongings by Mr. Ramezani, the prosecutor of the time. The Execution of Imam [Khomeini]’s Order had cut it off again. As a result of the repeated problems created by the Execution of Imam [Khomeini]’s Order, I went to the Department of Communications and the Registry several times and submitted letters. The content of the order was: “Seyyed Hosein Vahdat-Hagh was executed due to his membership in the … Baha’i sect. All his possessions not yet seized are now confiscated for the wages he received during his service.” And I as his wife, “was imprisoned for membership in the … Baha’i sect but was released and had a non-prosecution order”. In short, in front of all my three children, they separately wrote, “Due to membership in … Baha’i sect and for living abroad, all their possessions are confiscated; if anything was sold, it should be returned.” In summary, the name Bahá’í as a reason for confiscation was repeated five times.
Honourable Leader, please keep in mind that my children have not appeared in front of the court nor the Sharia judges. They have not been questioned. Photocopies of their powers of attorney, which add up to thirteen, signed by the Embassy of the Islamic Republic and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as my daughter’s marriage certificate, and even photocopies of their passports, are included in our file. Now they have issued an order which feels just like they have exhumed the shattered body of my husband, blown life into it and issued a new execution order for him. More than ten years after his execution by an order explicitly showing the reason as his being a Bahá’í, how can they now issue an order to confiscate the possessions of his children? How can they be accountable before the Almighty God? They want to sell them now; whereas all the rent money and income had gone to the benefit of the tenants since Farvardin 1360 [March 1982]. The owners, and I, as their mother, and agent, have not received even a penny, other than abusive and foul language and disrespect. God only is the witness to what I have gone through in that building.
Honourable Leader, Mr. Seyyed Jafar Karimi, chief justice of the Military Supreme Court, issued an order in 1364  for the apartments to be under the supervision of the Revolutionary Prosecutor’s Office until the return of my children. Also, Mr. Moghtadaei, member of the Supreme Council of [Cultural] Revolution, in response to Mr. Mesbah’s letter in 1361 , wrote: “If his wife and children (meaning me and my children), are fugitives, their possessions should be confiscated.” Why should the possessions of individuals who have valid passports and new birth certificates, who happen to live abroad like thousands of other Iranians, be confiscated and sold? How many contradictory orders by how many Sharia judges should be issued for a certain individual? Wouldn’t the sale and non-execution of previous orders be considered insults to the religious leaders and the law?
Honourable Leader, what person would be courageous enough to endanger herself and her family after suffering such terrible and fatal blows? Isn’t telling the truth about these problems painful? I swear to God, these are very painful, difficult and bitter for me, but I see it as my conscientious duty to tell them to my country’s highest authority, guardian and leader. This is how I follow your statement that, “Rights are not to be given; rather, rights are to be taken”, so that I may not fall short in upholding my duty, for myself and my children. Now I am not responsible before God and you. Rather, the honourable leaders and national authorities and government of the Islamic Republic are responsible.
Esteemed Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, I beg your pardon for having so frankly presented numerous truths that were kept hidden in my heart and soul. I ask you to issue an explicit order to prevent the sale [of my children’s apartments], because an individual from the Execution of Imam [Khomeini]’s Order, by the name of Mr. Amiri, has been trying to buy or sell my children’s apartments for several months. Please order for our file to be forwarded to the Supreme Judicial Council for the execution of Article 35 of the law to convene the criminal Courts 1 and 2. Please note, the head of sales at the Execution of Imam [Khomeini]’s Order is Mr. Haddad. I visited him a few years ago and had explained our whole situation.
I expectantly await the order of that Honourable Leader.
With utmost respect,
Pari Vahdat-Hagh [Signature over the name]