Newly-leaked documents describe ‘Iranian state-sanctioned persecution of Baha'is’
Newly-released documentary evidence detailing “years of relentless oppression” suffered by the Baha’i community in Iran has been published by the Washington-based Baha’i International Community (BIC) this week.
A BIC website published thousands of official documents, reports, testimonials, and audio-visual material chronicling the “continuous, pervasive, state-sponsored persecution against the Baha’is of Iran, demonstrating the falsity of claims made by Iranian authorities that Baha’is are not discriminated against,” according to a statement by the group.
The archives include cases of imprisonment and execution, acts of violence, kidnapping, the burning and destruction of homes, confiscation of properties, and the spreading of hateful propaganda through the state media.
“The compelling accounts and documents on the website provide proof of the decades of systematic implementation of policies designed to suffocate an entire community,” said Diane Ala’i, Representative of the Baha’i International Community.
Most documents in the archives are related to the years following the Islamic revolution in 1979, during which the Baha’is became subject to a new wave of intense persecution. Over 200 Baha’is were executed or disappeared without a trace, the statement read.
“Baha’is continue to be denied access to university education, excluded from employment in the public sector as well as numerous professions in the private sector, and denied benefits in the pension system. They are unjustly arrested, imprisoned, and sentenced to years in prison after trials lacking due process of law,” it added.
The Baha’i faith is a small monotheistic religion which began in Iran in the 1800s and whose followers face regular persecution.