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Iran verhängt Todesstrafe über Bahá'í-Anhänger
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sunday, February 11, 1996
Baha'i gets death sentence in Iran - French report
PARIS, Feb 11 (Reuter) - An Islamic revolutionary court in Iran has sentenced to death a 49-year-old Baha'i for apostasy, returning to his original faith after converting to Islam, the French branch of the Baha'i Faith said on Sunday.
Dhabihu'llah Mahrami, an Agriculture Department employee in Yazd province,will also have all his possessions confiscated according to the court's ruling handed down in the past few days, a Baha'i spokeswoman said. Mahrami, born a Baha'i, was accused of converting to Islam in 1981 to avoid being fired from his government job but returned to the Baha'i faith seven years later, according to translations of court documents provided by the French Baha'is. "The Baha'is of France fear that this verdict marks a resumption of open persecution against our co-religionists in Iran.
"Thanks to the pressures of international opinion, executions had stopped... but there were still more subtle persecutions aimed at strangling them economically and repressing them socially," she said.
The Baha'i Faith, an off-shoot of Islam, was created in Iran 150 years ago. It says it has six million members worldwide including 350,000 in Iran where, according to the court documents released in Paris, it is officially considered "a misleading and wayward sect."
The last execution of a Baha'i in Iran was in 1992 when Bahman Samandari, a leading community member, was executed.
In letzter Minute erreichte uns noch folgende Botschaft des Universalen Hauses der Gerechtigkeit. Bitte entschuldigt, daß wir noch keine Zeit hatten, diese auf Deutsch zu übersetzen.
To all National Spiritual Assemblies
Dear Baha'i Friends,
We take great joy in announcing the formation next Ridvan of two new National Spiritual Assemblies, one in Africa and one in Europe: The National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Sao Tome and Principe with its seat in Sao Tome, whose inaugural National Convention is being organized by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Nigeria.
The National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Moldova with its seat in Chisinau, whose inaugural National Convention is being organized by the Regional Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the Ukraine and Moldova. The Regional Spiritual Assembly of the Ukraine and Moldova with ist seat in Kiev will become the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of the Ukraine.
We are delighted by these further evidences of the extension of the institutions of Baha'u'llah's Administrative Order as the conclusion of the Three Year Plan approaches. May the friends throughout the world derive fresh impetus from these developments and, with confidence in the assurance of Baha'u'llah's confirmations and assistance, concentrate their energies on spreading His redemptive Message.
With loving Baha'i greetings,
[SIGNED: THE UNIVERSAL HOUSE OF JUSTICE]