Sanaz Alizadeh Roshankouhi, Soha Sabeti, and Behrouz Rahmani

Baha'is In Northern Iran Imprisoned For Opening Daycare Center

Monday, 12/04/2023

Three Baha'i citizens in northern Iran, have collectively been sentenced to 33 months of imprisonment for establishing and operating a daycare center.

According to the judgment issued on Saturday, Soha Sabeti received a sentence of 33 months of punitive imprisonment, a 13-year prohibition from engaging in any educational activities, and a cash penalty of approximately $750.

Similarly, Behrouz Rahmani and Sanaz Alizadeh Roshankouhi were each handed a 10-year ban on educational activities, accompanied by a cash penalty of around $500.

The charges include "managing and membership in groups, societies… within the country with the aim of undermining national security, promoting the interests of groups or organizations opposing the Islamic Republic system, engaging in educational activities, and promoting the Baha'i Faith."

The revolutionary court judge claimed the group were involved in educational activities and the implicit promotion of the Baha'i Faith, incorporating its principles and beliefs, especially aimed at children, forbidden under the Islamic Republic which only permits the practice of Christianity, Judaism, Zoroastrianism and Islam.

Recent weeks have witnessed a surge in pressure from security and judicial institutions targeting the roughly 300,000 strong Baha'i community.

Baha'is constitute the country's largest non-Muslim religious minority and have faced systematic persecution and harassment since the revolution of 1979 and the establishment of the Islamic Republic.


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