Sources estimate that non-Persian ethnic groups make up roughly 35-40% of the population of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Many high-ranking officials in the Islamic Republic are from Iran's many ethnic minorities--including Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, who is from the Turkic-speaking Azeri population. The grievances of Iran's ethnic minorities often go unaddressed, however, not unlike those of its majority Persians.
Iranian citizens of Kurdish, Azeri, Arab and Balouch populations, among others, often face institutionalized discrimination. Meanwhile, peaceful calls for the expansion of their cultural and linguistic rights are often faced with harsh repression. While the criminalization of dissent is pervasive throughout the Islamic Republic, the documents below present examples of how it disproportionately affects Iran's ethnic minority populations.
- Witness Statement of Shaykh Mohammad Kazem Khaqani
- Witness Statement of Isa Savari
- A Framework of Violence: Repression of the Arab Ethnic Minority in the Islamic Republic of Iran
- Witness Statement of Shahoo Hosseini
- New Reports of Difficult Conditions for Sunni Prisoners in Rajaee Shahr Prison
- Iran Expels Newsman Over 'Tone' of Coverage
- Life and Death: Survivor Accounts from Iran’s Kurdish Regions Post-Revolution
- Witness Statement of Ahmad Khalili
- Witness Statement of Mother Shaheed
- Witness Statement of Abdullah Mostafa Soltani