Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Press TV (Iran): "Iran prosecutor: Bahais, Israeli agents"

The last Iranian press article I posted about the Baha'is claimed "Tehran tolerates followers of the religion." In the present article, "Iran's Prosecutor General" is quoted as saying "Bahai organizations are illegal":
Iran's Prosecutor General Qorban-Ali Dorri-Najafabadi says members of the banned Bahai sect have irrefutable links with Israel.

After Tehran's deputy prosecutor Hassan Haddad announced on Wednesday that seven members of the Bahai sect would soon be tried, the US State Department issued a statement to condemn the decision.

The seven Bahai followers will be tried on charges of "espionage for Israel, desecrating religious sanctities and propaganda against the Islamic Republic."

The statement by the US State Department condemned the move, saying the espionage charges were "baseless."

"There is irrefutable evidence that adherents of the Bahai sect are in close contact with the enemies of the Iranian nation and have strong links to the Zionist regime," Dorri-Najafabadi explained on Sunday.

The top Iranian judiciary official accused the group of gathering intelligence on Iran and involvement in espionage activities against the Islamic Republic.

"Bahai organizations are illegal and their connections to Israel and their enmity toward Islam and the Islamic system are absolutely certain and their threat against the national security is a proven fact," added the Iranian cleric.

Followers of the Bahai sect -- founded in Iran in 1863 -- are regarded as infidels and have been persecuted both before and after the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
British "Junior foreign minister Bill Rammell," commenting on these developments, stated:
The Iranian government appears to be increasingly using vaguely worded charges of this nature to target human rights defenders and religious minorities . . . .
Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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