Freedom of Religion

Iran’s persecution of the Baha’i has been met by silence from Rouhani–and the world

  By Ramin Ahmadi Reprinted from qz.com   In all my years as an Iranian-American, I have never heard so much discussion about Iran. In the halls of Congress, on ... Read more

Eleven Human Rights Organizations Condemn the Destruction of Sunni Place of Worship in Tehran

Eleven human rights organizations have condemned the destruction of a Sunni place of worship in Tehran in a statement and called on international organizations and Ahmed Shaheed, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI), to react to these actions by the Iranian government. ... Read more

Continued Uncertainty regarding the Fate of Mohammad Ali Taheri

(July 8, 2015)—In recent weeks rumors have abounded that Mohammad Ali Taheri, the leader of a spiritual movement known as Erfan-e Halgheh, has been sentenced to death. The Iranian judiciary has denied these reports, but in the absence of clear information regarding his ultimate fate or even his current condition, lingering concerns remain. Taheri was first arrested in April 2010. In December 2011, Branch 26 of the Tehran Revolutionary Court sentenced Taheri to five years of imprisonment, 74 lashes, and a fine of 910, 500,000 toumans (approximately $671,000 per the exchange rate at the time). These sentences were based on charges of insulting sacred religious values, obtaining an illegitimate income, engaging in religiously prohibited acts, the dissemination of audiovisual material, and the illegal practice of medicine. The last of these charges stems from alternative medicine practices promoted by Taheri’s spiritual movement. ... Read more

Iranian Writer Sentenced to Death for Apostasy

(June 20, 2015) – The Iran Human Rights Documentation Center (IHRDC) has learned that Hesameddin Farzizadeh, a 23-year-old former nuclear physics student, has been sentenced to death for apostasy by the Criminal Court of Meshkinshahr in Ardabil province. A source with knowledge of the case indicates that Farzizadeh was arrested in a raid on his house in November 2014 by plainclothes Ministry of Intelligence (MOI) agents and held incommunicado at the MOI facility in the town for several days before being transferred to Meshkinshahr Prison, where he has been held since. The charge of apostasy stems from a book written by Farzizadeh, entitled “From Islam to Islam”, in which Farzizadeh examines the history of Shi’a Islam and raises questions about certain facets of Shi’a ideology. For instance, in his book Farzizadeh reportedly questions the existence of the Twelfth Imam, who, according to Shi’a theology, is a messianic figure who is to eventually reappear as a latter-day savior of humanity. ... Read more

UN Secretary General’s February 2015 Report on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

A/HRC/28/26 Distr.: General 20 February 2014 Original: English Human Rights Council Twenty-eighth session Agenda item 2Annual report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human ... Read more

Apostasy in the Islamic Republic of Iran

(July 30, 2014) – IHRDC’s latest 50-page report, Apostasy in the Islamic Republic of Iran, details the jurisprudential as well as the legal context in which apostasy cases are prosecuted in the Islamic Republic of Iran. The report takes an in-depth look at a number of apostasy cases involving a diverse range of defendants, and provides an account of the legal and religious issues raised in each case. ... Read more

Witness Statement of Davood Irani

In this Witness Statement, Davood Irani, a Christian convert who led a home church in Shiraz, describes the circumstances of his arrest and imprisonment and the charges he faced. Although he was charged with national security crimes, his account of his interrogations clearly demonstrates that he was arrested on account of his religious belief. ... Read more

Special Rapporteur's March 2014 report on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran to the UN Human Rights Council's 25th session. ... Read more

UN Secretary General on the situation of human rights in Iran - 11 March 2014

A/HRC/25/75 Distr.: General 11 March 2014 Original: English Human Rights Council Twenty-fifth session Agenda item 4 Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention Summary The present report ... Read more

Special Rapporteur's February 2013 report on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran to the UN Human Rights Council's 22nd session. ... Read more

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