Sen's daily

January 26, 2020

Two arrests in Qaemshahr


Iran Wire and HRANA, 26 Janury, 2020. –

Faraaneh Mansouri ( فرانه منصوری) and her husband Saamaan Shirvaani (سامان شیروانی), two Bahais from Qaemshahr, were arrested on January 23 while visiting the home of an old friend in the same city. The arrest was made by agents from the Intelligence Arm of the Revolutionary Guards. The agents came unnanounced over the wall of their friend’s house and forced their way inside. They showed an arrest warrant, and filmed the whole process. The agents searched the house and seized some belongings including a laptop computer, hard drive and mobile telephone, and arrested both the couple and the friend they were visiting. The friend was released a few hours later. The agents took Mr. Shirvaani with them to the couple’s home, which they also searched, but it is not known whether they seized any belongings since only Mr. Shirvani was with them, and he is being held incommunicado.

It is not known why this couple were arrested, or where they are being held. Their families have not been successful in obtaining further information. [Reading between the lines of these reports, it is possible that they were visiting a Muslim friend, and the security forces took action because they seek to minimize contacts between Bahais and Muslims. Some years ago, a Bahai named Faraaneh Mansuri was expelled from university in Tabriz because of her Bahai beliefs. I do not know whether it is the same person. ~ Sen]

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 23, 2020

Review court in Kerman cuts sentences of four Bahais

HRANA, January 22, 2020. –

Over two years ago, a Revolutionary Court in Kerman sentenced Amrullah Khaalqiyaan (امرالله خالقیان), Ehasaanullah Amiri-niya (احسان الله امیری نیا), Nima Rajab-zaadeh (نیما رجب زاده) and Armaan Bandi (آرمان بندی) to five years in prison. The provincial Review Court has reduced that to four months in prison, on a charge of undermining internal security by teaching the Bahai Faith. The Review Court’s decision was signed by Muhammad Mohaqqeq (محمد محقق) and Majid Zaynaldini-Neya (جید زین الدینی نیا). It appears that the hearing of the Review Court was held on April 28, 2019, but the finding has only just been announced.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 16, 2020

Nine Bahais begin prison terms in Birjand


HRANA, January 16, 2020. –

On January 15, nine Bahais whose arrest and sentencing was reported previously began their sentences, ranging from two to four years, in Birjand Prison.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

Wahda Silaani bailed in Kerman


HRANA, January 15, 2020. –

Wahda Silaani (وحدا سیلانی) was freed on bail from Kerman Prison on January 15. Her bail was 100 million tumans (21,000 euros ; $US 24,000). She was arrested in her home in Kerman by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on December 29. The agents also seized some of her belongings. The charges against her are not yet known.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 15, 2020

`Ali Ahmadi’s 11-year sentence confirmed


HRANA, January 14, 2020. –

The Review Court for Mazandaran Province has upheld the 11-year sentence for Mr. `Ali Ahmadi (علی احمدی), a Bahai from Qaemshahr. Mr. Ahmadi was charged with propaganda against the regime and administering Bahai activities, and sentenced by the Revolutionary Court of Qaemshahr. He was informed of his sentence on December 2, 2019, The Review Court confirmed the sentence two weeks later, without holding a sitting, based on the file provided by the Revolutionary Court. Earlier reports said that the Revolutionary Court considered the possession of Bahai religious texts as sufficient to justify the sentence.

Mr. Ahmadi was arrested on November 20, 2018, by agents who insulting his religious beliefs and calling him “unclean” and “Bahai dog.” They also seized some religious books mobile phone and computer. He was held in solitary confinement at the Kachou’i Detention Centre in Sari. He was freed on bail on January 2, 2019, after posting bail of 150 million tumans (31,000 euros ; $US 35,000).

This is the fifth time he has been arrested in the past ten years: On the first occasion he was sentenced to 10 months in prison, and on the second occasion he was acquitted. In 2011 he was arrested with two others and charged with participation in Bahai activities. A previous report said that he is also known as Cheragh-`Ali (چراغعلی) Ahmadi. Another states that he is 60 years old, and works as a rice trader.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 11, 2020

Sahba Farnoush sentenced to 16 years in prison


HRANA, January 11, 2020. –

A Revolutionary Court in Tehran has sentenced Sahba Farnoush (صهبا فرنوش) to 16 years in prison. The verdict, from Judge Emaan Afshaari (قاضی ایمان افشاری), was announced to him in recent days. Mr. Farnoush, a Bahai from Tehran, was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on November 15, 2015, and was freed on bail from Evin Prison in late December that year. Bail was set at two million rials (60,000 euros, $US 66,000). Mr. Farnoush is one of 20 Bahais who were arrested in Tehran, Isfahan and Mashhad on that day. Agents from the Ministry of Intelligence also closed down Bahai-run businesses in the Province of Mazandaran. The Ministry of Intelligence actions apparently related to Bahais commemorating the birth of Baha’u’llah, but the charges are not stated, and it is not clear why the court decided to issue a judgement on the case four years after Mr. Farnoush was bailed. He is now about 45 years old. His father was arrested and executed following the 1979 Revolution in Iran, and his property was confiscated. At that time, Sahba was five years old.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 9, 2020

Bahais in Iran denied new ID cards

Iran Wire, January 8, 2002. –

Since 2015, Iran has been progressively introducing a ‘smart’ form of the national ID card, with biometric data and a holographic photograph. At some point — apparently a few months ago — the application form for this card was changed, to remove the ‘other religion’ option, and anecdotal reports appeared of individual Bahais being denied a card unless they called themselves Muslims, Christians, Jews or Zoroastrians. Iranian ID cards are valid for seven years, but individuals with pre-2015 cards may need to apply for a smart ID to open a bank account or other specific transaction. I have not reported these individual stories because, as the Iran Wire report says:

It is unclear when or why the change came into effect or the reason – though at least one Iranian politician has taken credit for the development.

The Member of Parliament for Khomeini Shahr, Mohammad Javad Abtahi, said in January last year that he had called on the Interior Ministry to remove the option to list “Other Religions” on the national smart ID application form. Abtahi claimed that including “Other Religions” allowed “stray sects” to be treated as official.

The Iran Wire report gives examples of Bahais being denied ID cards, one of which says:

A Baha’i citizen from Shiraz told IranWire: “I went to a government service counter to register [for an ID card]. The cashier asked me for personal information such as name, surname, date of birth, name of father, mother, and so on, and filled out my registration form in the computer. Then he printed it out and gave it to me to sign. In the personal information column in the Religion section it was written: Islam. When I told him that I was not a Muslim, and to please state ‘Other Religions’ in my registration form instead of Islam, he replied the only religions in the form are Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism. He said he was allowed to choose only one of these four.”

When the Baha’i citizen protested, the official said: “It’s not a problem; this is just for registering, it’s just a formality. No one will notice that you wrote Islam! … The new guidelines state that if the applicant does not choose one of these options, his or her registration will not be accepted.”

This change excludes non-religious persons, Bahais, and Iranian residents of Buddhist, Hindu and other backgrounds from opening bank accounts, and perhaps from obtaining a passport, and obtaining documents for the military draft, and voting in elections. There are conflicting reports as to whether the matter may be corrected when new software is installed in a few months, or is a deliberate policy change by the National Registration Office (which seems more likely). The full Iran Wire report is here in English and here in Persian. Another article in Persian suggests that more systematic efforts to exclude Bahais from social life in Iran have increased as individuals trained by the anti-Bahai Hojjatiyeh Society have risen in government under President Khamane’i (the Hojjatiyeh was banned by Khomeini).

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 3, 2020

Mitra Badrnezhad granted prison furlough in Ahwaz


HRANA, January 2, 2020. –

Mrs. Mitra Badrnezhad-Zahdi (میترا بدرنژاد زهدی), a Bahai serving a one-year sentence in Ahwaz, returned to prison on January 2 after a 10-day furlough. She began her sentence at the Sepidah Prison in Ahvaz on September 21, 2019. She was charged with membership of the Bahai organisation. Initially sentenced to five years in prison by a Revolutionary Court, her sentence was reduced to one year by the Review Court for Khuzestan Province. The circumstances of her arrest and interrogation are reported here.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

January 1, 2020

Kaamraan Shahidi sentenced : 5 years and confiscation of assets


HRANA, December 31, 2019. –

A Revolutionary Court in Tehran has sentenced Kaamraan Shahidi (کامران شهیدی), a Bahai from Karaj, to five years in prison and the confiscation of his assets. The Judge was Muhammad Moqayesseh ( قاضی محمد مقیسه) a notorious abuser of human rights and legal procedures. Mr. Shahidi was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on September 25, 2017. His business, as a gold trader, was also shut down, and its entire holdings of gold — about 2 kilograms — were seized, along with some currency. The arresting agents also went to the home of his sister and daughter and seized all the gold, along with books and pictures relating to the Bahai Faith. He was held in solitary confinement for 21 days and interrogated closely. was released on bail from Evin Prison in Tehran on October 18, 2017. Bail was set at 500 million tumans (123,00 euros ; $US 145,000). A source said that prior to his initial arrest, Mr. Shahidi was making jewelry with Bahai symbols. A woman who claimed to be a Bahai approached him, and drugged him using fruit juice so that he became unconscious. The woman then stole gold and cash. When Mr. Shahidi reported the theft to police, they arrested him.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 31, 2019

One arrest in Kerman: Wahda Silaani

HRANA, Decmber 29, 2019. –

Wahda Silaani (وحدا سیلانی), a Bahai from Kerman, was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on December 29. The agents came to her home, which they searched. They seized some of her belongings, and took her away. It is not clear where she is being detained, or why she was arrested.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 30, 2019

Shahnam Jadhbani free in Gonbad


HRANA, December 2019. –

Shahnam Jadhbani ( شهنام جذبانی ), a Bahai from Minudasht, was released from Gonbad prison on December 28. He and his wife Shohreh Samimi ( شهره صمیمی ) were arrested in Minudasht in October 2012. Around the same time, 20 other Bahais were arrested in Golestan Province by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence, acting without warrants. Many Bahai homes homes were searched, with the seizure of computers, books and family photo albums. Mr. Jadhbani was sentenced to eleven years in prison by Judge Mohsen Qadbari (قاضی محسن قنبری), on charges of “membership in the Bahai organisation, and propaganda against the regime and in favor of the Bahai Faith by participating in the Ruhi programme in Golestan province.” His wife was sentenced to nine years in prison by the same judge. The other Bahais arrested at that time were initially given very long sentences, but these were all reduced by the Review Court to less than two years, except that the Review Court did not at that time announce its decision on the cases of Mr. Jadhbani and his wife. Later the Review Court reduced his sentence to 15 months, on the charges of membership of the Bahai organisation and six months for participating in Ruhi classes. Sentences are normally served concurrently, so the longer sentence applies, but Mr. Jadhbani as served not fifteen but rather 19 months. The report does not indicate why neither this “section 134” rule regarding concurrent sentences, nor the provision for release after serving half of one’s sentence, was applied in his case.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 25, 2019

Sentences reduced for nine Bahais in Birjnand


HRANA, December 24, 2019. –

The Review Court for South Khorasan Province has reduced the long sentences handed down by a Revolutionary Court to nine Bahais. Behman Saalahi (بهمن صالحی), Khalil Malaaki (خلیل ملاکی), Bizhan Ahmadi (بیژن احمدی) and Saagher Mohammadi (ساغر محمدی) have been sentenced to four years in prison. Shayda Abedi (شیدا عابدی) has a three-year sentence. Firuz Ahmadi (فیروز احمدی), Simin Mohammadi (سیمین محمدی) and Maryam Mokhtaari ( مریم مختاری) have been sentenced to two years in prison. The ninth person in this report is Sohrab Malaaki (سهراب ملاکی), sentenced to three and a half years in prison. But in HRANA’s previous report on July 8 this year, the ninth person was Rafa’at Taalebi-fard (رفعت طالبی فرد). There is no explanation of why the name of the ninth person has changed.

The Revolutionary Court had sentenced all nine to five years on the charge of membership of the illegal and subversive Bahai organisation, and one year on a charge of propaganda against the regime in the form of teaching the Bahai Faith. The sentences are concurrent. The Revolutionary Court also ordered the confiscation of donations they had collected [from Bahais] during the 19th-day Feast for the affairs of the Bahai community in Birjand. The Review Court confirmed this confiscation.

Eight of the defendants were arrested in raids of 15 Bahai homes on the morning of October 21, 2017, but Shayda Abedi was arrested in Birjand on October 29. They were freed on bail individually, from November 18 to November 24. Although the nine Bahais were arrested on a Bahai Holy day (marking the Birth of the Bab), from the fact that so many homes were raided it appears that the Bahais had not gathered to celebrate the day, but were remembering the occasion separately in their homes.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 22, 2019

Noushin Hakimi to be bailed (updated)


HRANA, December 21, 2019. –

Noushin Hakimi-Noahnezhaad (نوشین حکیمی نوح نژاد), a Bahai from Bandar Lengeh, a port city near the straits of Hormuz, was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on December 14, and detained in the Ministry’s detention facilities. On December 20, she was transferred to prison in Bandar Abbas, and contacted her family by telephone saying that bail had been authorized. There is no information so far as to what she will be charged with.

HRANA later reported that she was released on bail on December 28.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 19, 2019

Sentences reduced for 3 Bahais in Semnan


Campaign for Prisoners of Conscience, December 18, 2019. –

The Review Court has reduced the sentence of Ardeshir Fenaa’eyan (اردشیر فناییان) from ten years in prison and one year of exile to six years in prison; the sentence of Behnaam Eskandreyan (بهنام اسکندریان) from five years in prison and two years’ exclusion from the city of Semnan to three years and six months in prison; and the sentence of Yalda Firouzeyaan (یلدا فیروزیان) from five years in prison and two years’ exclusion from Semnan to two years and six months in prison. They were notified of their sentences on December 16. They were charged with “membership of illegal groups acting against national security” and “acting against national security through propaganda and organizational activities.” They were not allowed a lawyer during their detention. They were arrested by teams of four to six masked agents from the Ministry of Intelligence in Semnan, in simultaneous raids on their homes at 8 a.m. on April 30, and have been detained since then (not released on bail, which is usual). Mr. Fenaa’eyan has previously served six months in prison for his Bahai beliefs. He began his sentence in January 2014. Immediately after his release, the Ministry of Intelligence sent him to the army to undertake his military service.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 16, 2019

Home searches, shop closures, and one arrest in Bandar Lengeh


HRANA, December 15, 2019. –

Noushin Hakimi-Noahnezhaad (نوشین حکیمی نوح نژاد), a Bahai from Bandar Lengeh, a port city near the straits of Hormuz, was arrested on December 14. The agents searched her home and seized some personal effects such as books and a mobile telephone. It is not known where she is being held or why she was arrested. Security agents also sealed the workplace and home of Erfaan Noahnezhaad (عرفان نوح نژاد), and sealed the optician’s shop of a son-in-law of the family, Wahid Zaraa`at-Kaar (وحید زراعت کار). Both are Bahais living in Bandar Lengeh. Mr. Zaraa`at-Kaar’s mobile telephone and laptop were seized.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 13, 2019

Peymaan Damashqi begins 6-month sentence


Iran Wire, December 12, 2019. –

On November 30, Peymaan Damashqi (پیمان دمشقی), a Bahai from Karaj, was summoned to Ghezel Hesar prison in Karaj to begin a 6-month sentence on the charge of “propaganda against the regime in the form of promoting the Bahai Faith in cyberspace.” I previously reported that he was sentenced to one year in prison by the Revolutionary Court, in a 10-minute trial. On November 13, this was reduced to six months, by the Provincial Review Court, although neither the defendant nor his lawyer knew of the Review Court hearing.

Bahai prisoners, and other prisoners of conscience in Karaj, are usually sent to Raja’i Shahr prison: Ghezel Hesar has been for people who have actually committed a crime. It is Iran’s largest prison. Mr. Damashqi had asked to be imprisoned with the other Bahai men in Raja’i Shahr, but was told that Raja’i Shahr was for prisoners whose files were supervised by the Ministry of Intelligence, whereas his case fell under the Revolutionary Court. His lawyer said that he may have been sent to Ghezel Hesar because his sentence was short.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 11, 2019

Five Bahai businesses allowed to reopen in Chabahar

HRANA, December 10, 2019. –

After closure of almost 40 days, five business premises operated by Bahais in Chabahar, a port city on the Gulf of Oman in the Province of Sistan and Baluchistan, have been allowed to reopen. They were sealed by the judicial authorities on October 30. The owners had taken a day off work to celebrate a Bahai religious holiday. For details see the previous report.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

Rouha Emaani transferred to Yazd prison


HRANA, December 10, 2019. –

Mrs. Rouha Emaani (روحا ایمانی), a Bahai prisoner of conscience serving a nine-month sentence in Kerman prison, was transferred to prison in Yazd on December 9. She was arrested on May 12, 2015, and released on bail on July 1, 2015. She began serving her sentence on September 3, 2019, so she has now served one third of her sentence and is eligible for conditional release. It is possible that this transfer relates to pending release. She was imprisoned in Kerman at her own request, to make it possible for her mother to visit her, but officials have several times threatened her with transfer or exile.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

Mother and daughter arrested, bailed, in Zahedan


HRANA, December 4, 2019. –

Mrs. Kimeya Poursaadeqeyan (کیمیا پورصادقیان) and her daughter Nasim Showqi (نسیم شوقی) were arrested in Zahedan on November 19, but this was not previously reported on Sen’s Daily. Officials later told family members that they would be charged with undermining national security. They were freed on bail on December 4. At the time of their arrest, their home was searched. Agents seized a laptop computer and a quantity of handwritten notes.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 9, 2019

Nine Bahais from Baharestan, Isfahan Province, bailed

Campaign for Prisoners of Conscience, December 8, 2019. –

Nine of the ten Bahais arrested in Baharestan, 20km south of Isfahan, on November 29 have been released on bail. At the time of their arrest, there was media speculation that they would be blamed for instigating the fuel price protests, which I thought unlikely. Their quick release on bail confirms that these arrests were just routine harassment. Those released are Shahaab Ferdowsian (شهاب فردوسیان), Nasim Jaberi (نسیم جابری), Mehraanullah Daddi (مهران‌الله دادی), Qodous Lotfi (قدوس لطفی), Shahbaaz Baashi (شهباز باشی), Naasr Lotfi (ناصر لطفی), Saagher Manouchehrzaadeh (ساغر منوچهرزاده), Homa Manouchehrzaadeh (هما منوچهرزاده) and Soroush Azaadi (سروش آزادی). There is no mention in this report of Wahideh Niazmand (وحیده نیازمند).

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

`Ali Ahmadi sentenced to eleven years in prison


HRANA, December 4, 2019. –

Mr. `Ali Ahmadi (علی احمدی), a Bahai from Qaemshahr, has been sentenced by the Revolutionary Court of Qaemshahr to eleven years in prison for “propaganda against the regime.” He was informed of his sentence on December 2. He was arrested on November 20, 2018, by agents who insulting his religious beliefs and calling him “unclean” and “Bahai dog.” They also seized some religious books mobile phone and computer. He was freed on bail on January 2, 2019, after posting bail of 150 million tumans (31,000 euros ; $US 35,000).

This is the fifth time he has been arrested in the past ten years: On the first occasion he was sentenced to 10 months in prison, and on the second occasion he was acquitted. In 2011 he was arrested with two others and charged with participation in Bahai activities. A previous report said that he is also known as Cheragh-`Ali (چراغعلی) Ahmadi.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

Destruction of Baha’i gravestones in Yazd


Iran Press Watch, December 4, 2019. –

Reports indicate damage to a number of tombstones on Bahai graves in Yazd’s Golestan Javid (Bahai cemetery). It appears that stones and blocks were used. Unknown persons have damaged this cemetery several times over the years. The desecration of Bahai graves, and sometimes the total destruction of Bahai cemeteries, by irregular forces is a regular occurrence in Iran. Since the 1979 Revolution, state authorities have also closed Bahai cemeteries and used the sites for development projects, with the purpose of removing visible signs of the existence of a Bahai community.

For a discussion of the long history of symbolic violence directed at graves and bodies of Bahais and others in Iran, see Mehrdad Amanat, Set in Stone: Homeless Corpses and Desecrated Graves in Modern Iran (2012).

Mozhgaan Ahmadzaadeh sentenced to six months in Qaemshahr


HRANA, December 6, 2019. –

Mozhgaan Ahmadzaadeh-Fedaa’i (مژگان احمدزاده فدایی), a Bahai from Qaemshahr whose arrest was not previously reported on Sen’s Daily, has been sentenced to six months in prison by the Revolutionary Court, on the charge of propaganda against the regime. She was informed of the sentence on December 2. She was arrested on December 26 last year, when she was driving with her family to a garden they have on the outskirts of Qaemshahr. Her car was surrounded and stopped by four security agency cars. They took her back to her home, which was searched by eight agents. They seized three mobile telephones, a tablet computer, a computer, some flash drives, CD, prayer books, photographs of their children and some religious images. She was taken to the Ministry of Intelligence detention facility, where she was held in solitary confinement for interrogation for one week. She was bailed on January 2, 2019. She was tried by the revolutionary court on November 13, 2019. She has three children; the youngest has just started primary school.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 7, 2019

Sentences of Kimia Mostafavi and Kiaana Rezvaani reduced to 6 months


HRANA, December 5, 2019. –

On December 2, Kimia Mostafavi and Kiaana Rezvaani were informed that their five-year sentences have been reduced to six months by the Provincial Review Court for Kerman. They were exonerated of the charge of “membership of the Bahai organisation,” and sentenced to six months for “propaganda against the regime.” The review court hearing was held on November 9, and — unusually — the accused were allowed a lawyer. Mr. Mohammad-Madi `Erfaaneyaan (محمدهادی عرفانیان) represented them. Kiani Rezvaani is a Bahai student excluded from university with the excuse of a faulty file, the excuse used to bar Bahais from tertiary education in Iran.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

Fariba Ashtari arrested again

Campaign for prisoners of conscience, December 4, 2019. –

Mrs. Fariba Ashtari (فریبا اشتری), a Bahai from Yazd, was arrested in her home on December 2. She has already served a two-year sentence for her faith, beginning on February 21, 2015. She was released on January 13, 2017. An active Bahai, and a psychologist, she is one of 20 Bahais who were arrested in central Iran in August 2012. They were charged with propaganda against the regime and participation in Bahai community activities. Her husband Nasser Baaqeri (ناصر باقری) and her son Fa’iz Baaqeri (فایز باقری) have also been imprisoned for their faith. Fa’iz Baaqeri was 17 years old when he was arrested, along with his father, on February 28, 2015, a week after his mother began her two-year sentence. In November 2018 he was sentenced to three years in prison, and his father to nine months. Mr. Baaqeri began his sentence in late September 2019. So far as I know, Fa’iz Baaqeri is still free on bail, waiting to begin his sentence.

In the latest arrest, five security agents raided Mrs. Ashtari’s home, which they searched. They seized some Bahai books and her mobile phone and computer. Her relatives are concerned for her as she has a heart condition and has recently had two operations, and because there is no news about where she is being detained.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

December 2, 2019

Tenth Bahai arrested in Baharestan, Isfahan Province; one arrest in Omideyeh

HRANA, December 1. –

Following previous reports of the arrest of nine Bahais in Baharestan, Isfahan Province on November 29, HRANA reports that a tenth Bahai, Soroush Azaadi (سروش آزادی), was arrested on the same day. Also on November 29, Bardiyeh Farzaaneh (بردیا فرزانه) was arrested at his home in Omidiyyeh, Khuzestan Province. The agents seized some of his personal possessions. There is no apparent link between these two reports.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

November 30, 2019

Nine Bahais reported arrested in Isfahan

Radio Zameneh, November 30, 2019. –

Nine Bahais are reported to have been arrested in Baharestan, 20km south of Isfahan, on November 29: Shahaab Ferdowsian (شهاب فردوسیان), Nasim Jaberi (نسیم جابری), Mehraanullah Dadi (مهران‌الله دادی), Shahbaaz Baashi (شهباز باشی), Wahideh Niazmand (وحیده نیازمند), Nasr Lotfi (ناصر لطفی), Qodous Lotfi (قدوس لطفی), Sagher Manouchehrzaadeh (ساغر منوچهرزاده) and Homa Manouchehrzaadeh (هما منوچهرزاده). Their homes were searched and belongings were confiscated.

Radio Zameneh suggests that this could be related to an accusation made in government-sponsored media [such as Fars News], that Bahais were involved in the recent unrest over fuel price increases. I think this unlikely. (1) While none of those named is known to me, the names are not unlikely for the children of Bahai parents. If the authorities had arrested some rioters and launched a story that they were actually Bahais, they would probably be named Muhammad, Fatimah and Ali. (2) If the authorities arrested these Bahais in the hope of accusing them of causing the unrest, that story would face the obvious objection that the unrest arose spontaneously and simultaneously all over the country, immediately after the surprise announcement of price increases, while these nine were in Isfahan with the internet and telephones cut off across the country.

Therefore, pending further information, I am assuming that they were arrested for being Bahais, in the usual way, and will be charged with “propaganda.” Readers may have seen reports of major fuel price protests in Baharestan: this is Baharestan in Tehran Province, not the new dormitory town of Baharestan in Isfahan province.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

November 26, 2019

Abbaas Taa’ef free on bail in Tehran


Campaign for prisoners of conscience, November 25, 2019. –

`Abbaas Taa’ef (عباس طائف), a Bahai from Tehran, was freed on bail from Evin Prison on November 25. He was arrested by agents from the Ministry of Intelligence on September 27. The agents searched his home and workplace and seized a laptop, mobile phone and some ID documents and some of his personal effects. His office, which is his workplace, has been sealed by the authorities. He suffers from heart disease, kidney disease, and diabetes.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

November 22, 2019

Sentences confirmed for 7 Bahais from Bushehr


HRANA, November 21, 2019. –

The Review court has confirmed the three-year sentences of seven Bahais from Bushehr. They are Minou Reyaazati (مینو ریاضتی), Asadollah Jaaberi (اسدالله جابری) and his wife Ehteraam Shakhi(احترام شخی), Leqa Faraamarzi (لقا فرامرزی), Emaad Jaaberi (عماد جابری) and Puneh Naashari (پونه ناشری). All seven were arrested in raids on Bahai homes in Bushehr on February 15, 2018 (an earlier report said February 13). Their homes were thoroughly searched, and personal effects such as laptops, books, flash drives, external hard drives, and family photograph albums were seized. Emaad Jaaberi and Puneh Naashari (were released on bail on March 6 and the remaining five on March 13, 2018. Bail was set at 250 million tumans (53,000 euros ; $US 66,000).

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

One arrest in Damavand


Iran Press Watch, November 21, 2019. –

Maryam Leqaa’i-Forsatipour (مریم لقائی فرصتی پور) was arrested on October 22 after being summoned to the Damavand Office of the Ministry of Intelligence. She has been taken to the Ministry of Intelligence’s detention center known as Ward 209 of Evin Prison in Tehran. Authorities also searched the home of this Bahai after her arrest and confiscated several personal belongings, including laptops and mobile phones belonging to her and her husband. As previously reported, agents from the Ministry of Intelligence also arrested Mitra Forsatipour (میترا فرصتی پور) in her home in Gilavand on October 21.

Older items can be found in the archive, here. Even older news is here.

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