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Iran’s persecution of Baha’is branded ‘crime against humanity’

 Published: 14:38, 1 April 2024

Iran’s persecution of Baha’is branded ‘crime against humanity’

Iran's relentless persecution of its Baha'i minority has sparked widespread condemnation, with human rights advocates branding it 'a crime against humanity.' 

In a report released by Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Monday, the New York-based organization detailed a pattern of systemic abuse endured by Iran's largest non-Muslim minority since the Islamic revolution of 1979, urging for international intervention, including potential involvement of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The report highlights a litany of abuses suffered by the Baha'i community, ranging from arbitrary arrests and property seizures to severe restrictions on educational and employment opportunities, as well as denial of basic rights such as dignified burials. According to HRW, these injustices constitute a deliberate and protracted campaign of repression orchestrated by Iranian authorities, amounting to the grave offense of persecution under international law.
By systematically depriving Baha'is of their fundamental rights on the basis of their religious affiliation, Iran's actions squarely fall within the purview of the ICC's mandate. The court's statute explicitly defines persecution as the intentional and severe violation of basic rights motivated by factors such as religion, ethnicity, or nationality, thus encompassing the egregious mistreatment suffered by the Baha'i community in Iran.
HRW's report underscores the urgent need for accountability and redress for the countless Baha'is who have endured decades of persecution at the hands of Iranian authorities. As the international community grapples with this ongoing human rights crisis, concerted efforts must be made to hold perpetrators accountable and ensure justice for victims.
The plight of Iran's Baha'i community serves as a stark reminder of the grave consequences of religious intolerance and discrimination. In the face of such egregious violations, it is incumbent upon the global community to stand in solidarity with the Baha'i people and advocate for their rights to be upheld and respected. Only through collective action can we hope to bring an end to these atrocities and safeguard the dignity and freedoms of all individuals, regardless of their religious beliefs.

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