Sen's daily

October 23, 2016

Killing of a Bahai in Yazd was religiously motivated

Bahai News (Persian), October 22, 2016

As previously reported, Farhang Amiri (فرهنگ امیری), a Bahai living in Yazd, was murdered by two brothers who came to the door of his house on the evening of September 26. He suffered multiple stab wounds, including to the heart. According to one report he was first hit on the head with a brick. The men were arrested, and have confessed to the murder, saying they killed Mr. Amiri for religious reasons. The information comes from the Prosecutor’s office in Yazd, via the family of Mr. Amiri. The apparent murderers told the Prosecutor that Bahais, in their eyes, are infidels and a verse in the Quran (which they could not cite) required them to kill infidels. They picked Mr. Amiri at random from among the Bahais, and watched his home and family. The father of the killers is reported to have said that his sons had become radical, and he and the boys’ mother had been feeling that they were about to do something, and had reported their fears to the Ministry of Intelligence. A source interviewed by Bahai News said that the two had acted on their own initiative, although some initials reports had said that a third person, and members of the Basiji (militia), were involved. The source said that Mr. Amiri died when he was stabbed by the older brother, and the younger brother had injured Mr. Amiri in the face with a small knife.

The Universal House of Justice, the elected body that heads the Bahai community world-wide, has issued a letter (in Persian) dated October 19, which states that religious fanaticism was the primary motive for the killing of Mr. Amiri. The letter acknowledges the help of neighbourhood residents leading to the capture of the killers, the work of the police, and the willingness of a lawyer to assist [the family of the deceased], as signs that this fanaticism is not shared by all sectors of society. It is promising that the investigating magistrate has promised to approach the case on the basis of the equality of all citizens.



  1. “First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.” Martin Niemoller

    Comment by petussing — October 23, 2016 @ 23:55 | Reply

    • The quote is a good and wise one Phillip. However I think there is all the difference in the world between an oppressive regime which discriminates or persecutes a minority — as Iran does — and a tragedy such as this, where two young men have been radicalized and have committed a murder which is a sorrow for the victim’s family, and ruins their own family. Think of the situation of the murderers’ parents, and their wider family. Compare this situation to the time when Hussein (?) Ashchi and some other Bahais killed three Azalis in Akka, and the mortification felt — and harm suffered — by Baha’u’llah and his family as a result. It is a blemish that to this day marks the almost unblemished record of the Bahai community as peace-loving and obedient. My point is that religious fanaticism is a catastrophe, and it has struck two families here. Let us acknowledge their specific and individual tragedy, and not simply turn to the big picture of the regime using the “othering” of minorities for political purposes.

      Comment by Sen — October 24, 2016 @ 00:49 | Reply

  2. This is just an assertion by UHJ,though any religious persecution is terrible.But we hv to wait for the police report and legal decisions.

    Comment by Hamid — October 24, 2016 @ 11:17 | Reply

    • Caution with news reports is always a good rule. In this case the source of information is the Prosecutor’s office, who have communicated it to the family of deceased, apparently orally, and the family in turn have passed it on via an interview with Bahai News. The House of Justice is using this information.

      Comment by Sen — October 24, 2016 @ 12:22 | Reply

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