"Death to Baha'is" written on the gate of a house belonging to a Baha'i family

Iran's Persecution Of Baha'i Minority Intensifies

Tuesday, 12/05/2023

The Baha'i International Community (BIC) has issued a statement accusing Iran of employing brutal tactics to persecute the country's Baha'i religious minority.

Released on Monday, the statement sheds light on the government's systematic efforts to strip Baha'is of their "sense of peace and security in their daily lives."

The disturbing methods employed by authorities include violent home raids, a surge in Baha'is in prison and awaiting summons, punitive property confiscations, denial of burial rights, obstruction of higher education, and a surge in official hate speech against the community.

Simin Fahandej, BIC Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, expressed deep concern, stating, "The growing volume of attacks on Iran’s Baha’is, which we have observed for over a year, is exceeded only by the brutality of the new tactics that the Iranian government is bringing to bear against the innocent Baha’i community."

The statement outlines a strategy by the Iranian government to terrorize vulnerable Baha'is, who already face extreme pressures for their faith, aiming to demoralize not only the Baha'i community but all of Iranian society. The international community is urged to insist on an immediate halt to the oppressive policies.

Since October, 40 Baha'is have been arrested, and the homes of nearly 100 families have been invaded and searched across cities. Approximately 70 Baha'is are in detention or serving prison terms, subjected to psychological and physical abuse during interrogations, while 1,200 others are entangled in ongoing trials or awaiting prison summonses.

Unofficial sources estimate over 300,000 Baha'i citizens reside in Iran, yet the Constitution officially recognizes only Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism, making Baha'is the largest non-Muslim religious minority, systematically targeted since the 1979 revolution.

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