Farhang Amiri (file photo) Photograph: (WION)
In recent times, anti-Baha’i rhetoric in Iran has been on a high
Farhang Amiri, 63, was murdered outside his home on 26 September 2016 in the city of Yazd, Iran. The two attackers have cited his religious beliefs as the reason behind this violence. They have been arrested
Farhang worked as a driver and a farmer and lived a modest life. He was attacked outside his residence by two assailants who were later joined by several others. He was found by a family member, who found him severely injured with multiple stab wounds in the chest. A consequence of longstanding systematic effort by the Iranian authorities to encourage hatred and bigotry against Baha’i community, according to Bahá’í International Community (BIC), this intolerance has been on a rise since 1979 Islamic Revolution.
According to the Community reports, Baha'is have been systematically persecuted as a matter of government policy. During the first decade, more than 200 Baha'is were killed or executed, hundreds more were tortured or imprisoned, and tens of thousands lost jobs, access to education, and other rights – all solely because of their religious belief. This is being cited as one of the largest government-led attacks on Iran’s largest non-Muslim religious minority. Since 2005, more than 890 Baha'is have been arrested, and the number of Baha'is in prison has risen to 85.
Outraged at this blatant attack, Bani Dugal, Principal Representative of the Baha’i International Community to the United Nations said, “This is not the first incident of persecution against Amiri’s family. His children had their businesses and residences searched last year by government agents who confiscated laptops, telephones, and other items.”
Currently, both the attackers have been caught and they have admitted to killing Amiri with a knife that they had bought for the sole purpose of meting out this attack.