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Open letter speaks out for the rights of all Iranians


NEW YORK  7 Dec. 2010— In an open letter to the head of Iran’s Judiciary, the Baha’i International Community today contrasted the country’s persecution of Baha’is with Iran’s own call for Muslim minorities to be treated fairly in other countries.

“We…request that the Baha’is in that country be granted their full rights of citizenship, in order that they may be able to fulfill their heartfelt aspiration to contribute, alongside their fellow citizens, to the advancement of their nation,” says the letter.

“This, indeed, is no more than what you rightfully ask for Muslim minorities who reside in other lands. Baha’is merely seek the same treatment from you,” the Baha’i International Community states.

Respecting the rights of Iranian Baha’is now would “signal a willingness to respect the rights of all the citizens of your country,” the letter says.

The document, dated 7 December and addressed to Ayatollah Mohammad Sadeq Larijani, states that the injustices meted out on Iran’s Baha’i citizens are a “reflection of the terrible oppression that has engulfed the nation.” Redressing the wrongs suffered by the Baha’is would “bring hope to the hearts of all Iranians that you are ready to ensure justice for everyone.”

“Our call, then, is in reality a call for respect of the rights of all the Iranian people,” the Baha’i International Community says.

“How can a just society, or a just world, be built on a foundation of irrational oppression and the systematic denial of basic human rights to any minority? Everything your country overtly professes to seek on the world stage is contradicted by your treatment of your own people at home.”

Read the full letter in English

Read the full letter in Persian