In Ireland, a Holocaust survivor speaks out for the seven

May 30, 2013

For its part in the Five Years Too Many campaign, the Baha’i community of Ireland sponsored an event at the prestigious Buswell’s Hotel in Dublin.

130515 photo of Ireland event withTomi Reichental

Human rights activist Tomi Reichental, at right, standing, speaks at the Five Years Too Many event in Ireland. On the left is Brendan McNamara of the Irish Baha’i community.

Held on Wednesday, 15 May, the meeting featured a speech by Tomi Reichental, a well-known human rights campaigner, author, and Holocaust survivor who has lived in Ireland for 50 years.

Mr. Reichental said the persecution of Iranian Baha’is unfortunately reminds him of what happened to the Jews in Nazi Germany.

“I can very well identify with the struggle that the Baha’i religion suffers in Iran,” said Mr. Reichental. “People are discriminated against only because of their religion.”

He said when he reads about the discrimination Baha’is face in Iran, such as their exclusion from higher education, economic restrictions, and the “widespread incitement of hatred against the Baha’is including in the official news media,” he finds that these “exact things happened to us as Jews.”

He said he hoped the Five Years Too Many campaign would remind “the Iranian government the whole world is watching them.”

He made a direct plea for the release of the Yaran and for the end of religious persecution in all its forms.

“We are today the bystanders,” he said. “And we just must not be quiet. We must raise up our voices and do whatever we do to help these people so that they don’t sit for nothing, for years and years incarcerated just because they believe in something different.”

The Baha’i community of Ireland also produced a video for the campaign, which can be viewed here:


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