Iran Judiciary Vows to Punish Former President’s Daughter for Upholding Baha’i Rights

ABN NEWS- A high-ranking member of the Iranian Judiciary has said that action will be taken

against Faezeh Hashemi, the outspoken daughter of prominent former Iranian President Akbar

Hashemi Rafsanjani, following her meeting with Baha’i leader Fariba Kamalabadi and other well-

known civil rights activists in Tehran last week.

Faezeh Hashemi previously shared a prison cell with Kamalabadi.

“This was a very ugly and obscene act,” said the Judiciary’s ultra-conservative spokesman,

Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei, at a press conference on May 18, 2016. “So far as I have gathered,

many people, grand ayatollahs, religious scholars, and even her own father have condemned this

act.”

“Uglier than this act is that after all these condemnations and the fact that her father told her to

remedy her act, she did not apologize, and this is truly regrettable,” he said. “The Judiciary

pursues any crimes that have taken place accordingly, and as with all cases this case will be dealt

with as required, according to law, and the way the law has stipulated.”

Ejei’s statement comes on the heels of calls from other hardliners for Faezeh Hashemi to be

arrestedfor meeting with Fariba Kamalabadi, an imprisoned leader of the Baha’i community who

was home on a five-day furlough, on May 13, 2016.

Simin Fahandej, the faith’s spokesperson at the United Nations in Geneva, told the International

Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that these calls are aimed at further isolating the Baha’i

community, which is one of the most severely persecuted religious minorities in Iran.

“Faezeh Hashemi’s action is a humanitarian gesture to show respect for the beliefs of others,

which shows her social maturity,” said Fahandej.

“For 37 years the Islamic Republic has tried to create divisions among various groups of people,

but the opposite has happened,” she said. “Today we see a significant change not only in the

views of human rights activists [towards Baha’is] but also the general public’s views.”

Fahandej added that the Islamic Republic “should realize that demanding freedom and human

rights for others is not the same as following their beliefs. There’s a big difference.”

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