Situation of Iranian Bahá’ís

Situation of Baha’is in Iran

Media reports

Reports in the news media about the situation of Iranian Baha’is

Associated Press2 August 2013

Iran's supreme leader is urging Iranians to avoid all dealings with members of the banned Baha'i sect in a possible prelude to further crackdowns on the minority.

The Daily Beast4 June 2013

Four years after she was freed from Iranian prison, Roxana Saberi calls for her fellow prisoners be released as prisoners of conscience. They are currently serving 20-year terms simply for their religious beliefs.

The Huffington Post17 May 2013

“The Baha’i Faith accepts the divine origin of all of the great religions of the world, including Islam, together with Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Zoroastrianism, urges its followers to seek truth independently, has no clergy, embraces the equality of the sexes… That, in the last quarter of the 20th century, these beliefs could bring the power of the state down on an entire community and continue to do so to the present day is one of the tragedies of our time.” – Anthony Vance

Millennial Journal16 May 2013

“It has now been five years since Iran’s brutal, authoritarian regime imprisoned the Yaran, the seven leaders of the Baha’i community in Iran.  My hope is that with all the focus on religious liberty in the US among Catholics and the Bishops, Catholics will come together with others in the global community who believe in human dignity and human rights to stand up and bear witness to the extraordinary evil and injustice being perpetrated by the Iranian regime and actively pressure the regime to allow members of the Baha’i faith to freely and safely practice their religion.” –By Robert Christian

The Times, Article of Faith blog15 May 2013

“Iran’s treatment of the Bahá’í community is “truly shocking” and described it as a matter of concern for all faiths, according to the Church of England’s leading advisor on foreign policy. Dr Charles Reed was speaking after a delegation of faith leaders to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He called on Foreign Secretary Willam Hague to renew the government’s support for the seven imprisoned Bahá’í leaders, said the “most basic of rights” had been impaired for Iran’’s largest religious minority.” (By subscription only.)

Azad Tribune/Article 1914 May 2013

"As part of the global campaign ‘Five Years Too many’, the Iranian human rights lawyer Ms Mahnaz Parakand who represented the seven Baha’i leaders and herself fled Iran fearing execution, addressed the Law Society of England and Wales and the Bar Human Rights Committee with regard to the trial. This article is based on her presentation at the seminar.”

The Guardian14 May 2013

“Iran’s religious minorities are arrested on fatuous charges, endure trials that violate the state’s own due process, are jailed on unproven convictions and tortured in prison.”

Business Standard (of India)14 May 2013

“Senior BJP leader L K Advani today appealed Iran to release seven Bahai leaders who have been sentenced 20-year jail, saying the success of democracy is in showing “tolerance to the diagonally opposite point of view.”

The Sydney Morning Herald12 May 2013

“My mother, who is innocent of any crime, has been held in Iranian prisons since May 14, 2008, because of her religion. She is a member of the Baha’i faith. She is serving a 20-year sentence, and this week marks the fifth year since her arrest.”

National Post 9 May 2013

“The Iranian regime teaches that Baha’is are subhuman, irrational, illegitimate citizens and traitors. Scores have been executed after closed-door trials, banned or driven from posts in universities or government.”

The Globe and Mail9 May 2013

“A litmus test to judge Iran’s record has been the treatment afforded to its largest non-Muslim religious community, the Baha’is.”

CNN, Belief Blog9 May 2013

“Wilson is on the forefront of a campaign called “Five Years Too Many” that calls for the release of seven Baha’i volunteer leaders who have been imprisoned in Iran for the past five years.”

Roll Call7 May 2013

“Hollywood actor Rainn Wilson, best known for bringing life to the aggravating geekery of Dwight Schrute in the NBC sitcom “The Office,” is using his celebvocat status to advocate for the release of seven religious leaders currently imprisoned in the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

AFP7 May 2013

“Five years after seven Bahai leaders were arrested in Iran, members of the faith are campaigning to increase attention to their plight in hopes that authorities will release them.”

The Washington Post, The Reliable Source Blog6 May 2013

“What he wants: More attention to the plight of Iran’s Baha’i, the largest religious minority in that nation; they have long been persecuted by the government, prohibited from getting university degrees and often jailed. “These poor seven souls are wasting away on trumped-up charges just because they want to pray together,” he told us.”