Baha’i Citizen in Damavand Sentenced to 2 Years in Prison

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Translation by Iran Press Watch

HRANA News Agency – Siavash Sobhanian, a Baha’i citizen living in Damavand, has been sentenced to 2 years in prison by the Revolutionary Court of this city. Mr. Sobhanian was arrested by security forces in August 2019 in connection with the exhumation of a Baha’i citizen and later released.

According to the HRANA news agency, the news organ of the Iranian Association of Human Rights Activists, Siavash Sobhanian, a Baha’i citizen, was sentenced to imprisonment.

Mr. Sobhanian received a sentence of two years in prison on charges of acting against national security through membership in and running an illegal Baha’i organization, according to a verdict issued by the Revolutionary Court of Damavand on September 18, 2021.

Mr. Sobhanian, a resident of Mehrabad village in Roodehen district of Damavand city, was arrested by security forces in August 2019 for following up on the exhumation of a Baha’i citizen in Gilavand village and was released a month later.

A source familiar with the Baha’i citizen’s situation told HRANA: “Siavash Sobhanian’s father died a few years ago and he was not allowed to be buried in Rudehen and was forced to be buried in Khatunabad. “The charges brought against him by the Revolutionary Court appear to be based on his pursuit of burying his father in the Baha’i cemetery in Roodehen.”

Baha’i citizens are denied the right to exercise their religion. This systematic deprivation stands in violation of Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which both affirm that everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion.

According to unofficial reports, there are more than 300,000 Baha’is in Iran. While the constitution recognizes Islam, Christianity, Judaism, and Zoroastrianism as accepted religions (People of Book, as articulated in Sharia law), it denies recognizing Baha’i faith, which conclusively leads to the systematic violation of their rights.


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