Sunday * December 21st 2014

BBC News: Iran’s Baha’i community fear rise in persecution

On Friday, July 2, BBC News covered the recent demolition of 50 Baha’i homes in Ivel, a small village in northern Iran. The report also included a summary of the history of Baha’i persecution in Iran, as well as the inconclusive trial of seven Baha’i leaders who have been imprisoned in Tehran for more than two years.

From BBC News:

First there are the images of wooden beams on fire. Then buildings come into view, some without windows and doors, others reduced to rubble.

The shaky mobile phone footage posted on YouTube by Iranian human rights activists shows scenes of destruction filmed secretly from inside a car.

The activists say the footage shows the results of an attack on the properties of Bahai residents in Ivel, a village in northern Iran.

They also say that non-Bahai residents supported the demolitions.

Bahai groups outside Iran have also received eyewitness reports from Ivel.

The witnesses said that several days before the bulldozers moved in, some people in the village signed a petition demanding the expulsion of their Bahai neighbours.

Many Bahais had left already: a number of families had fled previous attacks on Bahai property in Ivel. In 2007, for example, six houses were torched.

However, this time the Bahais left in the village complained to the police in the nearest town, Kiasar.

The police denied that there was a petition against them and refused to provide any protection.

The reports from Ivel residents say that by June 22, almost 50 houses belonging to Bahais had been flattened.

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