The UK has expressed deep concerns over the increasing arrests and persecution of followers of the Baha'i faith by the Islamic Republic as well as home demolitions and land seizures.
Britain's minister of state for South Asia and the Commonwealth at the Foreign Office, Tariq Ahmad, said on Friday “The UK is deeply concerned by increasing arrests of the Baha’i in Iran, including recent reports that the Iranian government has demolished houses and confiscated land in Roushankouh, [northern] Iran. Former spiritual leaders of the Baha’i in Iran are also reported to have been detained.
Condemning the increasing repression, he said that “the persecution of religious minorities cannot be tolerated in 2022. The persecution of religious minorities is a serious violation of international human rights law.”
“We are working closely with our international partners to hold Iran to account and continue to raise human rights concerns regularly with the Iranian Government,” Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon added.
On August 3, the US State Department’s Office of International Religious Freedom called on the Islamic Republic to stop its ongoing oppression, saying that “Amid a continued rise in arrests, sentences, and imprisonments, the US urges Iran to halt its ongoing oppression of the Baha'i community and honor its international obligations to respect the right of all Iranians to freedom of religion or belief.”
Iran’s security forces this week arrested several members of the Baha’i religious community regarded by the clerical government as heretics, and raided more than 20 households.
Security forces also laid siege to a village in northern Iran on August 2 and started demolishing houses and farms belonging to members of the persecuted Baha’i faith.