Posted by: becketfund | January 6, 2010

Iran: Government Steps up Persecution of Bahai Community

TEHRAN – The trial of the seven Baha’i leaders who were arrested in 2008 and are being held on charges of “espionage for Israel, insulting religious sanctities, and propaganda against the Islamic republic,” has been set for January 12, the Baha’i World News Service reported on January 5.  Diane Ala’i, the Baha’i International Community representative to the United Nations in Geneva, remarked: “Over the past several days, Iranian state-sponsored media have accused the Baha’is of being responsible for the unrest surrounding the holy day of Ashura.”  According to a report by the AFP, 12 Baha’i members have been arrested, among them the former secretary of Nobel peace laureate Shirin Ebadi’s human rights group, on accusations of involvement in the unrest surrounding Ashura.

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