[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:] Saham News

[Date:] 18 Azar 1398 [9 December 2019]

 

A Collective Letter From Political and Human Rights Activists to Amoli Larijani About the Treatment of Baha’is

In a letter to the head of the judiciary, Sadeq Larijani, a group of political and human rights activists, journalists and student activists called on him to investigate the treatment of Baha’is in Iran. [The letter] said, “In the face of these inhumane behaviours, and considering at least the destructive impact of such tragedies on social relationships, we will not remain silent; we demand that the perpetrators and their commanders be dealt with appropriately and legally.”

According to BBC Persian, part of this letter reads: “In recent months, our Baha’i compatriots have experienced increased pressure in the form of murder and assassination attempts.”

Nasrin Sotoudeh (lawyer), Narges Mohammadi (vice president of the Defenders of Human Rights Center), Mohammad Maleki (human rights activist and first president of the University of Tehran after the Revolution), Mohammad Nourizad (political activist), Amin Ahmadian (political activist and member of the Central Council of Advar Tahkim [Strengthening] Organization) are among the signatories of this letter.

The rest of the letter says, “We, the signatories of this letter, call for observing a legal and judicial approach in accordance with the Articles of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Article 8 and 14)―an approach that we owe to the non-Muslim citizens by practicing good morals, fairness and Islamic justice. While expressing strong sorrow for such acts, we call for the elimination of the violence, which, by increasing bigotry and narrow-mindedness, may affect our other compatriots.”

Earlier, more than 500 Baha’is in Iran wrote a letter to the senior clerics and Shiite jurisprudential authorities, referring to the recent violent acts against the Baha’is in various parts of Iran, calling for condemnation of such acts.

In mid-Shahrivar of this year [early September], Ataollah Rezvani, an active member of the Baha’i community in Bandar Abbas in southern Iran, was shot dead by unknown individuals.

Also, on the evening of Monday, 14 Bahman [3 February], an unidentified man wearing a mask, after entering the house of a Baha’i family in Birjand, severely injured Ghodratollah Moudi, Touba Sabzehjou and their daughter, Azam Moudi with knives.

Following the incident, the Baha’i International Community issued a statement calling on Hassan Rouhani’s government to investigate the assassination attempt on the Baha’i family in Birjand, Iran. According to the Baha’i International Community, “In the last eight years, since 2005, [there have been] fifty assassination attempts on the lives of Baha’is and nine Baha’is have been killed without any judicial trial or identification or prosecution of the killer.”

The Iranian government does not recognize the Baha’i Faith; according to the opposition groups, the government persecutes Baha’is because of their religious beliefs.

The officials in the Islamic Republic deny discrimination against Baha’is, but the Baha’i International Community says that after the revolution, Baha’is were barred from holding government positions and studying at universities; however, a number of Baha’i students have gone to university by concealing their religion.

According to the Baha’i International Community, “Dozens of Baha’is” are currently in prison in Iran for their [religious] beliefs.