A Baha’i Arrested in Semnan


Semnan continues to be a hotbed of anti-Baha’i activity, and many incidents against the Baha’is of that town have been reported in the pages of Iran Press Watch.

Iran Press Watch learned earlier today of the arrest of another Baha’i in that locality through a posting on Iran Press News dated Thursday, April 9, 2009.  The following is that report in translation:

In continuation of the worrisome condition of the Baha’i community of Semnan, another Baha’i citizen of that town has been arrested by security agents.

On April 6, 2009, Mr. Ali Ehsani, one of the Baha’is of Semnan, was summoned by the Revolutionary Court.  When he appeared at the court, charges against him were stated orally by the town’s prosecutor-general.  In the same session, surety and bail were determined for his release in form of a deposit of property titles.  However, as he was unable to provide the bail surety, he was taken into custody and incarcerated in Semnan’s prison facilities.

On Wednesday, April 8, Mr. Ehsani’s wife went to Semnan’s prison to visit her husband.  However, when Mr. Ehsani was brought to the visiting hall, the prison authorities refused to allow the husband and wife to meet, stating that he was being held incommunicado.

Mrs. Ehsani observed that her husband’s condition was highly stressed, and that his head had been shaven.

It should be noted that this incident has taken place after a series of anti-Baha’i activities, such as attacks against and looting of a number of Baha’i homes, arrest of several Baha’is, destruction and arson of the Baha’i cemetery, and the bombing of several Baha’i residences.

According to Human Rights Activists in Iran,  the Ehsanis were among the 20 Baha’i families whose homes in Semnan were searched by agents of the Ministry of Intelligence on December 15, 2008, and some of whose personal property was confiscated.

On the same day, Mr. Ehsani’s store, which distributes medical and dental equipment, was searched without a legal warrant, and all the furniture, equipment and merchandise in the store was confiscated and transferred to the office of the Ministry of Intelligence.  From that date, the store has been illegally kept shut by the Ministry.

In regards to Mr. Ehsani’s arrest, the charges against him are propaganda against the regime and not having tag on all his merchandize.

[Posted in Persian on Thursday, April 9, 2009 at http://www.iranpressnews.com/source/057199.htm.  Translation by Iran Press Watch.]


6 Responses

  1. Roya

    April 10, 2009 2:59 am

    “ministry of intelligence lacks intelligence.” Ali you’re funny :-) I think the Mollah actions against Bahais is like an ant trying to stop a herd of elephants from crossing the road because the ant thinks it can do it since it can lift up ten times its own weight.

  2. Ahang

    April 11, 2009 12:53 am

    This has nothing to do with the purpose of this blog, but I couldn’t resist commenting on “Adam’s wish”. There’s a very critical review of that book in the last issue of Baha’i Studies Review by Prof F. Vahman. The main problem with this book is the uncritical approach to the body of poem that are associated by Tahirih (notice I didn’t say “by”). Many poems suggested to be hers and translated in this book are actually not by her, and they are by other people, but they became famous because of this supposed association with Tahirih.

    Anyway, serious scholarship on the writings and poetry of Tahirih remains to be done, though a few solid attempts have been made by Prof Amin Banani and Dr. N. Muhammad-Husayni. More work remains before we know for sure authentic works that can be attributed to Tahirih.

  3. John Varney

    April 11, 2009 3:03 am

    there’s a song by Peter Gabriel called ‘Biko’ which says: ”You can blow out a candle, but you can’t blow out a fire. Once the flames begin to catch the wind will blow it higher.”

  4. Roya

    April 11, 2009 4:23 am

    Thank you Ahang. When I was a child, my mother used to sing Tahirih’s poems to me and often mix them with her own songs. Some how singing Tahirih’s poems would make my mother’s creativity to flourish. I realize that some of the poems in the book might not be Tahirih’s and look forward to reading the book. Thank you again. Roya


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