Baha’i Citizen Iman Rashidi Remains in Legal Limbo, Detained for Over 140 Days in Yazd Prison

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Iman Rashidi, a Baha’i citizen, continues to face a prolonged period of uncertainty as he remains incarcerated in Yazd Prison for over 140 days, according to a source close to Rashidi’s family who spoke to HRANA. Despite the passage of time, authorities have yet to grant him temporary release.

Rashidi’s ordeal began on October 5, 2023, when agents from the Ministry of Intelligence arrested him at his residence in Yazd. The arrest was accompanied by a search of his home, during which the authorities confiscated both his and his wife’s cell phones. Subsequently, Rashidi was transferred from a detention facility to Yazd Prison.

In a concerning development, his latest court hearing in February 2024 proceeded without the presence of his legal representation. Rashidi faces charges of “propaganda against the regime” and “propagating against Islamic Sharia.”

This is not Rashidi’s first encounter with law enforcement, as he has previously experienced arrests and convictions. In February 2018, he was released after serving a sentence. The ongoing legal limbo raises concerns about due process and fairness of his current detention.

Baha’is are subjected to violations of their religious rights, comprising 82% of reports on infringements against religious minorities, according to HRA’s 2023 annual report.

The Baha’i faith is not recognized as a legitimate religion by Iranian authorities, leading to systematic and longstanding violations of the rights of Baha’is in the country. This includes the denial of their fundamental right to practice their religion, which constitutes a clear breach of both Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The United Nations covenant holds that every person has the right to freedom of religion, freedom of converting religion, as well as freedom of expression, individually or collectively; openly or secretly.


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