Archive for the ‘Baha’is’ Category

آزادی پنج شهروند بهایی به قید وثیقه

Wednesday, April 7th, 2010

شماره ۱۳۳۹-۲۰۱۰

18 فروردین 1389

کليد واژه ها : زندانيان سياسي , جامعه

کمیته گزارشگران حقوق بشر – پنج شهروند بهایی در مرودشت شیراز با تودیع وثیقه آزاد شدند.

روز گذشته، سه‌شنبه ۱۷ فروردین پنج شهروند بهایی به نام‌های فرحناز آشنایی، طیبه فلاح، نوذر فلاح، جهانبخش بذرافکن و حسن بذرافکن با تودیع وثیقه ۵۰ میلیون تومانی آزاد شدند.

این افراد، ۱۰ اسفند سال گذشته طی یورش نیروهای امنیتی به منازلشان در مرودشت شیراز بازداشت شده و به بازداشتگاه اطلاعات شیراز منتقل شده بودند.

در حال حاضر تعدادی از شهروندان بهایی در شهرهای مختلف ایران در بازداشت به سر می‌برند.


http://schrr.net/spip.php?article9162

پنجاه جوان بهايی ممنوع‌الخروج شدند، رهانا

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

نام ۵۰ جوان بهايی ساکن شيراز در ليست ممنوع الخروجی‌ها قرار گرفته و آن‌ها نمی‌توانند از کشور خارج شوند.

رهانا: اين ۵۰ نفر پيش از اين به علت خدمات اجتماعی در روستاهای محروم اطراف شيراز در ۲۹ ارديبهشت ۸۵ دستگير شده بودند و با وجود داشتن جواز قانونی برای آموزش به کودکان اين محله ها، اطلاعات شيراز آنان را به ۳ سال شرکت اجباری در کلاس های تبليغات اسلامی مجبور کرد.

به گزارش خبرنگار رهانا لازم به ذکر است که کلاس‌ها به توهين و تحقير و تمسخر بر اين ۵۰ جوان و باورهايشان سپری می‌شود.
در ضمن ۳ تن ديگر از اين جوانان نيز به ۴ سال حبس در زندان شيراز محکوم شدند و از آبان سال ۸۶ دوران محکوميت خود را آغاز کردند. ساسان تقوا، هاله روحی و رها ثابت نام اين سه زندانی بهايی است.
حال علاوه بر کلاس‌های توهين آميری که آنان ملزم به شرکت در آنند، ۵۰ تن از ايشان اجازه خروج از کشور را نيز نخواهند داشت.

http://news.gooya.com/politics/archives/2010/03/102449.php

Tehran accuses US of launching “cyber war” against Iran

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Mar 14, 2010, 13:00 GMT

Tehran – Tehran has accused the United States of having launched a ‘cyber war’ against Iran, state television network IRIB reported Sunday.

IRIB showed a ten-minute special programme, apparently made by the country’s intelligence service, showing what it said were US efforts to infiltrate parts of Iranian society through the web and to encourage Iranians to fight against the establishment.

According to the report, the main figures in the alleged US plot are two former student activists

, Ahmad Batebi and Kayvan Rafei, whose operations in Iran are run under the umbrella of the so-called Association for Defending Human Rights.

The TV report showed a picture of Batebi shaking hand with former US President George W Bush – date and venue were not mentioned – and said that the Central Intelligence Agency had allocated at least 400 million dollars for the plot code-named ‘Operation Destabilizing Iran.’

Batebi had further met other high-ranking US officials, apparently from the Republican Party, and also cooperated with the London-based monarchist group ‘Royal Society )of Iran’ and the People’s Mujaheddin of Iran (PMOI) whose main base is still in Iraq, the report said.

According to the report, also members of the Bahai religious minority, which is regarded as an illegal religious sect in Iran, are involved in the cyber plot.

The plot had not only political aims but also tried to push Iranians into social immoralities such as illicit sexual relations, the IRIB report said.

The anti-Iran operation was started up in 2006 and was intensified after last June’s presidential election which was overshadowed by massive fraud charges and mass demonstrations against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Ahmadinejad’s re-election has not yet been acknowledged by the opposition and several Western leaders have refrained from congratulating the Iranian president.

The Iranian judiciary announced in a statement Saturday that 30 members allegedly linked to the US-linked cyber network were arrested.

The 30 were alleged to be gathering information on Iranian nuclear scientists, encouraging people to take part in anti-government demonstrations and further attracting and dispatching them to PMOI camps in Iraq to be trained as rebels, the statement said.

One among the arrested network members is from an illegal religious sect, the reports said, possibly a reference to the Bahai religious minority.

Iran regards PMOI as a terrorist group due to its involvement in the assassinations of several high-ranking Iranian officials, including the president and prime minister in 1980.

According to Iran, PMOI members have also attended protest demonstrations following last June’s disputed presidential election and had violent confrontations with police and security

forces.


Read more: http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/middleeast/news/article_1540858.php/Tehran-accuses-US-of-launching-cyber-war-against-Iran#ixzz0iDrtn7qG

آزادی تعدادی از زندانیان بهائی بازداشت شده پس از وقایع عاشورا

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Human Rights Activists News Agency

10/12/1388

سه تن از زندانیان بهایی روز شنبه با تودیع قرار وثیقه از زندان اوین آزاد شدند.

خبرگزاری هرانا – ابراهیم شادمهر، زاوش شادمهر و فرید روحانی با پرداخت قرار وثیقه از زندان اوین آزاد شدند.

به گزارش هرانا، در تاریخ 8 اسفند ابراهیم شادمهر، زاوش شادمهر و فرید روحانی با پرداخت ضمانت آزاد شدند. برای چند تن دیگر از بازداشت شدگان پس از عاشورا نیز قرار ضمانت و وثیقه گذاشته شده است. این گروه عبارت هستند از لواء خانجانی، ژینوس سبحانی، آرتین غصنفری و مونا هویدایی (میثاقی). نیکاو هویدایی دو روز پیش ازاد شده بود.

روند مشاهده شده اخیر تعیین وثیقه های بسیار بالا و سنگین برای دیگر بازداشت شده گان بهائی است. اخبار تکمیلی در مورد آزادی این گروه و دیگر زندانیان به اطلاع خواهد رسید.

http://hra-news2.info/news/13423.aspx

Iran’s Bahá’ís mentioned in Prime Minister’s questions

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

Source: http://bahainews-uk.info/2009/07/02/irans-bahais-mentioned-in-prime-ministers-questions/

The Prime Minister has promised to continue raising Britain’s concerns with Iran, over the issue of the seven Bahá’ís being detained in Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison.

Gordon Brown’s comments came during Prime Minister’s questions in the House of Commons, in response to the MP for Montgomeryshire, Lembit Opik.

“I have become deeply concerned about the seven Baha’i leaders in Iran facing trial by the revolutionary court on 11 July on serious but unsubstantiated charges, with no evidence being offered against them,” said Mr Opik, who is Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Friends of the Bahá’ís group.

Describing current circumstances in Iran as “very difficult issues”, Mr Brown expressed his “disappointment at the restrictions that (Mr Opik) has mentioned on the freedoms of the Iranian people, with people due to stand before a closed court on 11 July.”

According to information conveyed by the authorities at Evin to the family members of the seven Bahá’ís who have been imprisoned for more than a year, a trial date has been set for 11 July. The seven were arrested in the spring of 2008 and have been held without any formal charges or access to their attorneys. Official Iranian news reports have said the Baha’is will be accused of “espionage for Israel, insulting religious sanctities and propaganda against the Islamic Republic.”

“Some people in Iran are seeking to use Britain as an explanation for the legitimate Iranian voices calling for greater openness and democracy. However, we will continue, with our international partners, to raise our concerns with Iran, including on the issue that the honorable Gentleman raised,” Mr Brown said.

Anti-Baha’i slogans on Baha’i Home.

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Source: http://www.myfoxla.com/dpp/news/local/Bahai_Leaders_Await_Trail_in_Iran_20090629

شعارنویسی های شبانه بر دیوار منازل بهائیان سمنان




UK government renews call for release of detained Bahá’ís

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

source: http://bahainews-uk.info/2009/05/14/uk-government-renews-call-for-release-of-detained-bahais/

The United Kingdom government has reiterated its concern for seven Bahá’í leaders imprisoned in Iran on the first anniversary of their detention.

Foreign Office Minister of State Bill Rammell MP renewed calls on behalf of the UK government for the seven to be guaranteed a fair trial.

“A year ago today, 14 May 2008, six Iranian Bahá’ís; Fariba Kamalabadi, Jamaloddin Khanjani, Afif Naeimi, Saeid Rezaie, Behrouz Tavakkoli and Vahid Tizfahm were arrested,” said Mr Rammell. “Mrs Mahvash Sabet had been arrested in March of that year. The five men and two women made up an informal national committee, serving the needs of Iran’s 300,000 strong Baha’i community.”

“Despite being formally charged in February with spying for Israel, “insulting religious sanctities” and “propaganda against the Islamic Republic” – charges which could attract the death penalty – they are still awaiting trial,” said Mr Rammell.

Mr Rammell stated how the European Union has, on a number of occasions, expressed its deep concern for the wellbeing of the seven detainees, who have been denied access to legal counsel.

“I would like to reiterate these very genuine concerns today, and renew calls for the Iranian government to ensure that the lives and rights of these individuals are protected and that they are given a fair trial in accordance with international standard,” he said.

Three Baha’is Released in Semnan

Monday, May 4th, 2009

Source: http://www.iranpresswatch.org/
May 3, 2009
The following updates were made available to Iran Press Watch on Sunday, May 3, 2009.

As reported by Iran Press Watch (here), Mr. Ali Ehsani was arrested in Semnan on April 6. It is now reported in Persian (http://www.bab.blogfa.com/) that he was released from incarceration on condition of bail for 50 million tumans (equivalent of about $50,000).

On April 27, Mr. Siyamak Iqani and Mrs. Susan Tebyanian-Jabbari were arrested (here) in Semnan and now it is reported that they been released on condition of bail.

Unrelated to Semnan, Mr. Mushafeq Samandari was arrested on April 14 (here) in Babol and his family reports that so far he has not been allowed to meet with them, but permitted to have two telephone conversations with his family (http://www.bab.blogfa.com/).

Irish Times’ Plea to Iran over Detained Baha’is

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

[Source:http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/world/2009/0401/1224243794532.html]

PATSY McGARRY, Religious Affairs Correspondent

AT A hearing of the Dáil subcommittee on human rights yesterday Senator David Norris said: “Everyone has the right to be an apostate, to change your faith. If convinced, there is a moral imperative to do so.” He felt it was a weakness of Islam that it tried to force people to pretend to believe in something they didn’t.

The subcommittee had been presented with a submission from representatives of the Baha’i community in Ireland on the persecution of their co-religionists in Iran. Senator Norris remembered “the awful consternation” in Ireland “when anyone turned”. It was, he said “the Irish version of apostasy. It was nasty. Why shouldn’t people turn? I fully deprecate any system which claims ‘to know’ – the Grand Ayatollah, my fella the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Pope. They don’t know. It is wrong [for them to claim so] and leads to unpleasant consequences.”

Labour TD Michael D Higgins warned against Baha’i persecution being “caught up in the sort of bellicose language aimed at Iran . . . none of which justifies its breaches of human rights.”

Brendan McNamara of the Baha’i community in Ireland said that worldwide, the faith had five million adherents. It had emerged in mid-19th century Persia, now Iran, where it has 300,000 adherents today. The Baha’is had been persecuted throughout their history in Iran, primarily because Islam saw Muhammad as the final prophet of God, he said.

More than 200 Baha’is had been executed or killed in Iran since the 1979 Islamic revolution, he said, highlighting the detention of five men and two women, an informal leadership group of Baha’is in Iran, at Evin prison in Tehran since last year. Lawyers had been denied access and there was “little prospect of a fair trial in the circumstances”, he said.

The subcommittee agreed to write to the Iranian ambassador, Minister for Foreign Affairs, International Commission of Jurists and its president Mary Robinson, concerning the detained Baha’is.

Update on two Baha’i Prisoners in Mashhad

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009


Iran Press News reported the following on Saturday, March 28, 2009:

Two Baha’i citizens by names of Jalayer Vahdad and Sima Eshraqi were arrested on January 26, 2009, in Mashhad and as of this writing (March 28) continue to be incarcerated in solitary confinement.
So far, the authorities have given no reason for the arrest of these individuals to their families. During this period, a period exceeding 60 days, Mr. Vahdad has not been allowed to meet with his family at all The other prisoner is Ms. Sima Eshraqi and she was allowed only a single meeting with her family on March 10. The legal case and charges against her also remain completely obscure.

Article Source: http://www.iranpressnews.com/source/056695.htm. Translation by Iran Press Watch

Minoo Expelled from University in Semnan

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

Article source in Farsi: http://hra-iran.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=647:567&catid=160:6954&Itemid=368


Editor’s Note: On Saturday, March 7, 2009, several Persian online journals carried this report, which appears below in translation.

On March 1, 2009, the government-run University of Semnan expelled Miss Minoo Shahriari, a student majoring in economics, on the grounds that she was a Baha’i.

In an interview with the Committee that pursues the right of Baha’is to education on behalf of Iran’s Committee for Human Rights, she described her expulsion in these terms: “I was a student in macroeconomics, and about 5 weeks had passed since our second term classes had started. Before the semester had started, I had been threatened that if I did not write one of the approved religions in the form and insisted on continuing my education, then severe consequences awaited me, including preventing me from entering university, and if I were to enter, that other students and professors would have no relations with me. They said that I would be so harassed that I would be compelled to resign from the university.

Disregarding all these threats, I was eager to attend classes and showed my eagerness.

There was no particular problem, until one day I was told that I was no longer on the class roster. Officials in charge of registration and student files swore that they had not changed my student status.

Since previously I had been threatened many times by the president of the university and his deputy, I thought that the latest tactic was to scare me and they would not follow through with their threats [and dismiss me permanently].

To pursue the matter, I went to the central office of the university, but the person in charge completely ignored me — on purpose he would not even look at me. Eventually, he only said, “You must leave the university and Semnan at once.If you have a complaint, you can register it with the judiciary in the city.”

It should be noted that recently, with much greater intensity the authorities are expelling the few Baha’i students who had been able to participate in the college entrance exam and had enrolled at universities.

An Open Letter by Classmates of Expelled Baha’i Students from Sahand University in Tabriz:

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

Article Sourced at: http://hra-iran.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=723:321&catid=160:6954&Itemid=368
نامه سرگشاده جمعی از دانشجویان سهند تبریز در حمایت از همکلاسی های بهایی خود


متاسفانه در طی سه سال اخیر شاهد تشدید نگاه تبعیض آمیز مسوولین جمهوری اسلامی به جامعه بهاییت ایران بوده ایم.

بازداشت اعضای ارشد این جامعه مذهبی در روزهای آغازین انقلاب و سی سال بی خبری از سرنوشت آنها همچنین سالها ممعانت از ورود آنان به دانشگاه ، عدم اجازه اشتغال در مناصب دولتی و فقدان امنیت آنان، بازداشت چند باره مسئولان مذهبی آنان در طی سه دهه نشان از عزم راسخ مسوولان در برخود و سرکوب این بخش از جامعه ایرانی دارد. در تکمیل این برخوردها شاهد تصفیه اندک دانشجویان بهایی از دانشگاهها به دلیل اعتقادات مذهبی خود و به قصد عقب نگه داشتن آنها از پیشرفت و همچنین ممانعت از تصدی مشاغل دولتی می باشیم که خود گواهی دیگر بر وجود روندی سیستماتیک و هدفمند در برخورد با جامعه بهایی ایران دارد.

ما جمعی از دانشجویان دانشگاه سهند تبریز علاوه بر محکوم نمودن تمامی برخوردهای فراقانونی با این جامعه مذهبی که مخالف نص صریح اصل 3 بند 3 و بند 8 و همچنین اصل 14 قانون اساسی ( تسهیل و تعمیم آموزش عالی و مشارکت عامه مردم در تعیین سرنوشت سیاسی ، اقتصادی ، اجتماعی و رعایت حقوق انسانی غیر مسلمانان ) و نیز ماده 2 بند 2 میثاق حقوق اقتصادی و فرهنگی ( عمومیت آموزش عالی ) سازمان ملل متحد می باشد ، اخراج سه تن از همکلاسیهای خود (سینا دانا ، سماء نورانی و فراز وزیرزاده) را محکوم نموده و از مسوولان مسرانه خواستار تجدید نظر در نگاه خود به این بخش از جامعه ایران می باشیم و امید داریم که در سال جدید در کنار همکلاسان بهایی خود فارغ از هر مرام و مسلکی در جهت پیشرفت و بهروزی میهن خویش گام برداریم.

Closure of a Baha’i Business in Semnan

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

Read original article in Farsi:http://hra-iran.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=707:254&catid=84:502&Itemid=219

March 17, 2009
In a highly questionable legal act, the shop of a Baha’i in Semnan was closed and sealed.

On March 10, officers of the Edareh Amaken [Buildings and Municipality] came to Mrs. Shamil Pirasteh’s store and announced that her store should be vacated in one week and then be sealed, because they had received a warning notice from the Clothing Union of Semnan stating that her store did not qualify [for selling cloths] and that her business license was terminated.

The ambiguity of the legal procedure for preventing from operation and prohibiting the means of livelihood of this Baha’i citizen rests on the fact that for the past five years she had been allowed, legally, to continue her business and no warning had ever been issued. According to industrial law, there must be a sequence of four warning letters before a business may lose its license and be forced into closure. In this case, none of these procedures were followed.

Khatami in Canberra, advocating human rights, but denies persecution of Bahá’is

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

Article Source: http://news.brisbanetimes.com.au/breaking-news-national/israel-iran-can-coexist-says-khatami-20090324-9915.html

Israel, Iran can co-exist, says Khatami
Stephen Johnson
March 24, 2009

A former president of Iran believes the Islamic theocracy can peacefully co-exist with Israel as “brothers and sisters” and has defended his chequered record on human rights.

Dr Seyed Mohammad Khatami’s visit to Australia has attracted criticism from some in the Jewish community who have questioned his reformist credentials.

The former leader of Iran told a Canberra audience on Tuesday Iran had a history of living peacefully with its neighbours, putting him at odds with Iran’s current hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was reported in 2005 to have said he wanted Israel “wiped off the map”.

“The … Iranian nation has always looked forward to co-existing with different nations around the world,” Dr Khatami said at the Australian National University.

“But with respect to the crisis that is going on in the Middle East, the crisis should be resolved through a just approach. It requires a global wheel.

“If such solutions based on justice would be realised … to observe the right of different ethnic groups and peoples in the region … humans can live next to each other as brothers and sisters.”

On the eve of Dr Khatami’s visit, the head of the Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council, Colin Rubenstein, said the former Iranian leader did little to advance human rights.

“Khatami left office in 2005 having accomplished relatively little reform: pro-democracy protests were brutally suppressed under his watch, and newspapers and journals were banned,” Dr Rubenstein wrote in a newspaper opinion article.

“He advocated the death penalty for homosexuals, continued the punishment of stoning for adulterers, opposed women’s rights, and repressed minority religious and ethnic groups, such as the Baha’i.”

(more…)

Baha’i Woman Arrested in Sari

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009

On Tuesday, March 10, 2009, Iran Press News reported:

In a continuation of hostilities towards the Baha’is of Iran, a Baha’i woman in the town of Sari was arrested by agents of the Ministry of Intelligence and taken to the prison in the Kachui district of the same town.

According to reports received from Sari, Mrs. Shirin Furughian (Samimi) was taken into custody on Sunday, March 8, 2009, by agents of the Intelligence Ministry and taken to the Ministry’s prison in Kachui.

It should be noted that in the beginning of August 2008, agents of the same Ministry closed the shop of her husband, Adel Samimi. Shortly after this occurrence, their home was searched [by Ministry of Intelligence] and personal property such as their computer, satellite dish, pictures, and Baha’i books were confiscated.

Mr. Samimi was arrested on January 21, 2009, on the charge of “activities against national security”. He was released after nine days of interrogation. After repeated threats, his wife, Mrs. Furughian, was also arrested last Sunday.

Letter from the Baha’is in Kerman to Prosecutor General of the country Dorri Najafabadi

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009

This is a letter from the Baha’is in Kerman to Prosecutor General of the country Dorri Najafabadi pointing out that the management of the affairs of the Baha’i community since the 1983 ban on Baha’i administration has been done by ad hoc groups of Baha’is under close supervision and direction of the Iranian authorities in particular its Ministry of Intelligence and therefore charges of espionage or secrecy do not hold. Please click the link below to download the letter.

Download-Letter

Leading Indians Join the Wave of Support for Baha’is and their Rights in Iran

Saturday, March 7th, 2009

A Call to the Government of Iran:
Release Innocent Baha’i Detainees Facing Trial Immediately

We have learnt that the seven Baha’is, detained in Tehran without charges since May 2008,
are going to undergo trial at the Revolutionary Court very shortly. The Iranian Deputy
Public Prosecutor has recently announced that the seven Baha’is are accused
of “espionage for Israel, insulting religious sanctities and propaganda against the
Islamic Republic. Amnesty International “considers the charges to be politically
motivated and those held to be prisoners of conscience, detained solely because
of their conscientiously held beliefs or their peaceful activities on behalf of the Baha’i community.”

(more…)

Letter from expelled Bahá’i Student

Saturday, March 7th, 2009

On Tuesday 3rd March 3 Students were expelled from the University of Sahand in Tabriz for being Bahá’is.
The following is a letter from one of those students, Sina Dana.

http://www.Hra-Iran.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=640:657&catid=160:6954&Itemid=368

Kurdish Channel Tishke TV Interview Bahá’is

Saturday, March 7th, 2009

Diane Alai, Baha’i International Community’s UN Hamid Samandari give an interview on Tishke TV regarding the seven Baha’i prisoners in Iran.

Channel Four interview with Shirin Ebadi on Iran, Women’s Rights and the Bahá’is

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Senior Analyst reports on Irans Systematic Plan to Eradicate The Bahá’i Community in Iran

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

This article is from iranvnc.com

Iran moving to “eradicate” Baha’i faith – senior analyst

Updated: Thursday, February 19, 2009

13:00GMT—8:00AM/EST

Washington, 19 February (IranVNC)—Iran is engaging in a “systematic” effort to “eradicate” the banned Baha’i faith in that country, a senior analyst at the US Commission on International Religious Freedom [USCIRF] told IranVNC yesterday.

On Tuesday, Iran’s Judiciary spokesperson, Alireza Jamshidi, said that seven Iranian members of the national Baha’i coordinating committee, charged with espionage, could be indicted by next week. The seven individuals have been held in Tehran’s Evin Prison, since their arrests in March and May 2008.

“There’s now a systematic, clear effort to eradicate and destroy the Baha’i community at large,” said Dwight Bashir, a senior policy analyst at the USCIRF.

Bashir told IranVNC that the seven Baha’is who were charged with espionage were part of a coordinating group for educational and other social activities.

“So these kinds of activities and so clearly the charges that are being leveled by the regime here, I think add to the growing concern that there could be some ominous results in the days and weeks ahead,” he said.

Bashir also urged the administration of US President Barack Obama to press Iran on its human rights record, in any future dialogue with Tehran.

“We have said very clearly that… in terms of potentially wanting to open the hand if Iran unclenches its fist, as President Obama has said, that there needs to be clearly an agenda item, right at the top there on human rights issues,” he told IranVNC.

On 13 February, the USCIRF expressed concern over the imminent trial of the seven Baha’is, saying the charges were “baseless” and that the case lacked due process.

“It is disappointing that the Iranian government is demonstrating that it will use any pretext, however baseless, to harass and detain those whose religious beliefs differ from those enforced by the state,” said commission chair, Felice Gaer.

The Baha’i faith, which was founded in Iran in 1863, is not recognized by the Iranian government.

According to the Baha’i World News Service, nearly 30 other members of that faith are imprisoned in Iran “solely on account of their religion.” They too have been “falsely charged” and are awaiting trial, the group said.

Sources: IranVNC correspondent in Washington, USCIRF website, Baha’i World News Service website

Established in 1998, the USCIRF monitors the status of freedom of thought, conscience, and religion or belief outside the United States. The commission provides independent policy recommendations to the US president, secretary of state, and lawmakers.

More Branding of Bahá’is as “Enemies of Islam”

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Another official in Tabriz calls Baha’is the enemies of Islam and asks that the authorities deal with them quickly and seriously.

This is an article in Farsi from http://www.rasanews.com/Negaresh_site/FullStory/?Id=48703

IMHRO Condemning Trial of 7 Bahá’í Leaders in Iran for Spying

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Statement from Iranian Minorities’ Human Rights Organisation (IMHRO)

Ref.IMHRO.44

22/02/09

The Iranian government has announced that they will put on trial 7 Bahá’í leaders: Fariba Kamalabadi Taefi, Jamaloddin Khanjani, Afif Naeimi, Saeid Rezaie, Behrouz Tavakkoli, Vahid Tizfahm, and Mahvash Sabet. All seven were arrested in 2008 and stand accused of spying for Israel. The Iranian prosecutor has, however, written an open letter that has been published by papers in which he asks the security service to persecute Bahá’í believers in Iran .

IMHRO finds this request from the prosecutor to be extremely alarming. We fear that it will result in greater widespread persecution of Baha’i’s. We are very concerned about these 7 Bahá’í leaders, sources in Iran have told us that the government is planning a large scale crackdown and arrest of the Bahá’í in Iran.

Reza Washahi a researcher on minorities in Iran told IMHRO the following:

“The Bahá’í have always been persecuted in Iran, but after the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, Bahá’í faced a new era of terror and persecution. The Iranian government has never recognised Bahá’í as a religion. The government has guided mobs and religious extremists have destroyed their worship and historical places. Many have been murdered in daylight and their cases have never been followed by courts. Bahá’í are banned from employment and higher education and face all sort of social and cultural discrimination.” “It is clear that this is show trial and they persecuted for their faith and nothing else”

IMHRO is appealing to the international community and asks supporters to do the following:

To put a pressure on Iranian government to stop the inhuman treatment of Bahá’í in Iran

To ask the Iranian government to immediately release all the Bahá’í in prison, including the 7 Bahá’í leaders and to so without condition

To request the Iranian government to lift the social and cultural restrictions on Bahá’í in Iran

Actions
Please write to one of the following and express your concern regarding the treatment of Bahá’í in Iran. Ask them to release the Bahá’í prisoners. Remind the Iranian government that they are a signatory party of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights (UDHR), the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Also, please remind them that all of these covenants clearly support the freedom of social life and the freedom of religion

Secretary General United Nations
The Honourable Ban Ki-moon
United Nations Headquarters,
Room S-3800,
New York, NY 10017,
USA

Supreme Leader of Iran
Ayatollah Sayed ‘Ali Khamenei,
The Office of the Supreme Leader
Islamic Republic Street – Shahid Keshvar Doust Street
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
E-mail via web site
http://www.leader.ir/

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Ms. Navanethem (Navi) Pillay
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights,
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10,
Switzerland

Iranian President
Mahmoud Ahmadi Nejad
The Presidency
Palestine Avenue, Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
E-mail via web site
http://www.president.ir/en/

European Parliament Human Rights Committee
Ms Hélène FLAUTRE
Bureau d’Hélène Flautre au Parlement Européen,
8G130, rue Wierz,
B-1049, Bruxelles,
Belgique

Head of the Judiciary
Ayatollah Mahmud Hashemi Shahroudi
Howzeh Riyasat-e Qoveh Qazaiyeh / Office of the Head of the Judiciary
Pasteur St, Vali Asr Ave
South of Serah-e Jomhouri,
Tehran 1316814737, Islamic Republic of Iran

Germany and EU Call for Release of Bahá’i Prisoners in Iran

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

Germany and the European Union have added their voices to the mounting international concerns regarding the forthcoming trial of the Bahá’i prisoners in Iran. The following article was published in Tabnak Professional News

صدر اعظم آلمان و اتحاديه اروپايى در بيانيه هاى جداگانه از اتهام مقام هاى جمهورى اسلامى علیه هفت عضو رهبر جامعه بهائى ايران ابزار نگرانى عميق كردند.

در ارديبهشت ماه سال جارى هفت نفر از رهبران جامعه بهايى در ايران بازداشت شدند.

اين افراد به جاسوسى براى اسرائيل، توهين به مقدسات دينى و تبليغ عليه جمهورى اسلامى متهم شده اند كه در صورت محكوميت مى تواند مجازات سنگین را براى آنها به دنبال داشته باشد.

اولريش ويلهلم، سخنگوى آنگلا مركل، صدر اعظم آلمان در بيانيه اى پيرامون بازداشت رهبران بهائى گفت: « تداوم وضعيت موجود يا ادامه اقدامات، در شرايطى كه با استانداردهاى بين المللى سازگارى ندارد، به روابط (ايران) با جامعه جهانى صدمه خواهد زد.»

وى گفت: برخى نشانه ها حاكى از آن است كه بهائيان بازداشت شده در بهار سال ۲۰۰۸ پس از يك محاكمه سريع محكوم خواهند شد.

به گفته اولريش، كاردار ايران در برلين براى مذاكره پيرامون اين موضوع با يك مقام رسمى آلمان، احضار شده است.

وى افزود: «صدراعظم عميقا از وضعيت بازداشتى ها، محاكمه پیش رو و عدم حضور وكيل در دادگاه نگران است.»

به گفته قاضى حسن حداد، معاون امنيت دادسراى تهران، پرونده اين افراد قرار است در دادگاه انقلاب رسيدگى شود.

در همين حال، اتحاديه اروپا نيز در بيانيه اى با ابراز نگرانى عميق از اتهام هاى وارده به اين افراد گفته است: مقام هاى ايرانى اين افراد را هشت ماه بدون تفهيم اتهام در زندان نگهداشته اند و آنها در اين دوره به وكيل دسترسى نداشته اند.

اتحاديه اروپا مى گويد كه نگران است رهبران جامعه بهائى ايران به صورت عادلانه محاكمه نشوند و در اقدامی مداخلخ جویانه از مقام هاى جمهورى اسلامى خواسته است كه به ناظران مستقل اجازه دهد تا بر روند قضايى نظارت داشته باشند و اتهام هاى مطرح شده را مطالعه كنند.

پيشتر، آمريكا و بريتانيا نيز در واكنش هاى جداگانه اى از بازداشت رهبران بهائى ابراز نگرانى كرده و خواستار آزادى آنها شده بودند.

عليرضا جمشيدى، سخنگوى قوه قضاييه ايران، روز سه شنبه در كنفرانس خبرى خود با اشاره به اينكه بهائيان دستگير شده تا هفته ديگر محاكمه مى شوند گفت كه آنها به وكيل دسترسى خواهند داشت.

Destruction of Bahá’i Cemetery in Semnan

Friday, February 20th, 2009

The following is an article from Human Rights Activists In Iran about the latest destruction of another Bahá’i cemetery in the city of Semnan

در ادامه ی حملات و یورش های گسترده ی ماه های اخیر بر علیه بهائیان و گسترش روز افزون آن در ایران، بار دیگر شاهد اتفاق ناگوار دیگری بر علیه این جامعه ی مذهبی در شهر سمنان بودیم . روز یکشنبه مورخ 27 /11 / 1387 شاهد حمله ی گسترده ای به قبرستان بهائیان در شهر سمنان واقع در سنگسر بودیم که منجر به تخریب گسترده ی قبرستان این جامعه درشهرسمنان شد. تصاویر این تخریب در ذیل قابل مشاهده است.

در این یورش ساختمان محل شستشوی اموات کاملا تخریب شده و این ساختمان به همراه وسایل داخل آن را به آتش کشیده شد ،همین طور سنگ قبرها نیز مورد هجوم واقع گشته که در حدود 45 سنگ قبر تخریب شده است. مهاجمان در این یورش اقدام به نوشتن شعارهایی همچون “مرگ بر اسرائیل”،”همتون را می کشیم”، “مرگ بر بهایی کافر”، “از ایران برید گمشید بیرون”و… به روی دیوار و منابع آب واقع در محل، نمودند.

شهر سمنان در طی برخوردهای سیستماتیک ماههای اخیر با بهائیان صحنه برخوردهای فراقانونی بسیاری با اعضای این جامعه مذهبی بوده است که میتوان به موارد ذیل اشاره نمود:

در تاریخ 25/9/1387 مامورین اطلاعات یورش گسترده ای به منازل تعداد زیادی از بهائیان داشتند و بسیاری از وسایل این خانواده ها جمع و ضبط شد که در این حمله خانم صهبا رضوانی ( فنائیان ) از مسئولین جامعه ی بهایی در سمنان بازداشت شد که پس از 2 ماه حبس انفرادی در زندان سمنان در تاریخ 15 بهمن ماه در دادگاه غیر علنی و بدون حضور وکیل محاکمه شده و در تاریخ 19 بهمن ماه حکم 3 سال و 8 ماه حبس تعزیری به وی اعلام گردیده است .

در تاریخ 15/10/1387 آقایان عادل فنائیان ، عباس نورانی ( مسئولین فعلی در سمنان ) ، طاهر اسکندریان ( مسئول سابق در سمنان ) بازداشت شدند . وهمچنین دربامداد 13 /11 / 1387 گروهی ناشناس به وسیله ی نارنجک های دست ساز ( کوکتل مولوتوف ) به منزل خانواده ای بهایی به نام خانجانی در سمنان حمله کرده و این ساختمان را مورد هدف قرار می دهند لازم به ذکر است منزل این خانوادهء بهایی طی ماه های اخیر 2 مرتبه مورد بازرسی مامورین اطلاعات قرار گرفته بوده و بسیاری از وسایل این منزل توسط مامورین اطلاعات جمع و ضبط شده است .

حال با توجه به برخورد های گسترده ی اخیر با بهائیان درشهرهای مختلف ایران و همین طور برخورد های اخیر با بهائیان درشهر سمنان وضعیت این جامعه بسیاربه شدت نگران کننده می باشد .