On January 30, 2011, the Iranian judicial courts handed out one of the harshest prison sentences to a human rights activist ever given: Navid Khanjani, a Baha’i journalist, was sentenced to 12 years in prison. He was also slapped with a heavy fine and banned from being able to leave the country. His crimes, according to the court, were “founding the Baha’i Education Rights Committee”, and “membership in [two human rights organizations], the Committee of Human Rights Reporters (CHRR) and Human Rights Activists (HRA)”, in addition to “acting against national security”, “propaganda against the regime”, “disturbing public order” and “Libel”. In his work with these organizations, Khanjani had become a prominent voice in support of education rights for minorities in Iran. This consequently made him a target for the regime, which often labels any activism against it as “propaganda” or ‘”libel”.
Khanjani’s own activism comes from a deep, personal place: as a Baha’i, he was banned from pursuing higher education. In an interview with the Abdorrahman Boroumand Foundation (ABF) in 2009, Khanjani explained why this was:
Denying Baha`is the right to education was based on a directive by the Cultural Revolution Council, issued in 1991. This directive states that Baha`is do not have the right to education. It is written by Mr. Golpayegani and is signed by [the Supreme Leader] Khamenei during the Cultural Revolution. It is an [internal] law that has never been announced [which] says that Baha`is do not have the right to higher education. They can only study up to the university level. Some claim that this directive no longer exists. [But] it has been published on several websites and shown several times. This is a directive which they refer to unofficially, but it has never been publicly announced by a governmental source. It is used, but it doesn’t formally exist.
After several of his friends received expulsion orders referencing their Baha’i faith as the reason they were being denied University admittance, Khanjani helped found the Oppose Discrimination in Education Association and began his career as a stout activist for education rights. The Association advocated for all people deprived of their rights to schooling in Iran, not just Baha’is, though the regime labelled the group as a seditious Baha’i group. In response to Khanjani’s criticism of the government’s treatment of Baha’i students, state news outlets organized a media campaign against him, using him as an example of the subversive nature of the Baha’i community. He was called “a member of the cyber army” and “one of the perpetrators of the soft war” against the Islamic Republic. Because of his faith, they attempted to portray him as an outsider to Iranian society,said Safora Elyasi, a spokesperson for the Association.
“Other human rights activists have been facing such sentences, but the 12-year sentence of Mr. Khanjani is enormous compared to those who are sentenced to four, five, six and even seven years. We expect leaders of Green mMovement to react to Mr. Khanjani’s conviction because if they stay silent now, the question of ”insider and outsider” will be brought up, because of religious differences, and they cause the movement to fail right now,” she said. In regards to the Association, she added, ”We are fighting against discriminations. Mr. Khanjani always believed that we need to fight against all kind of discrimination, either ethnic, national, religious, academic or human rights related.”
I sit and try to write the words, I want your heart to hear.
Hoping to find some comfort, in the fact that your not here.
I look out into the open field, that you once occupied,
Knowing now that field is empty, because my love, you’ve died.
I do believe with all my heart, that your soul has gone to be,
With all the other angel dogs, that you were meant to see.
We will have to stay behind, until God calls us too,
So do not be afraid, that he’s only called for you.
The water is still, in the pond that you played,
And your bed is so empty, where your pretty head laid.
Our bed is to empty, where you once laid between,
the two people who LOVED you and now only dream,
That one day our eyes will shut one last time,
and you will come greet us, angel of mine.
Until then, I’ll keep trying to see through my tears,
with memories you left us, to reflect through the years.
We’ll never forget one minute we spent,
of loving and laughing, of places we went.
And I dread the day that your scent disappears,
for it’s “proof” to me, Shockie, that you were just here!
But one day will come, when we’ll start to see through,
the pain of the moment, and remember just “you”.
Now you go and play, and look down when you can,
remembering we love you, and this isn’t the end.
نمایشگاه عکس دادخواهی ملل تورک آزربایجان وعرب احواز روز جمعه ۲۳ اوت در اولس کروکس گاتن شهر یوتبوری برگزار شد. در این نمایشگاه نمایندگانی از احزاب سوئدی نظیر سوسیال دموکرات، حزب سبز، حزب چپ، فولک پارتی و نماینده ای از تشکل زنان لیبرال سوئد حضور یافتند.
در این نمایشگاه عکس که با تلاش حزب دموکرات آزربایجان جنوبی(گادپ) برگزار شد نمایندگانی از فعالان سیاسی تورک آزربایجان وعرب احوازی از میهمانان استقبال کرده وبه طور جداگانه برای آنها سیاست های دولت مرکزی ایران در آزربایجان واحواز را شرح دادند.
در نمایشگاه بر بحران محیط زیست ناشی از سیاست های غیرانسانی دولت مرکزی ایران علیه اقالیم غرب کشور تاکید شد. خشک شدن دریاچه ارومیه، انتقال آب رودخانه کارون، خشک شدن رودخانه های اقلیم احواز، طرح توسعه نیشکر دراقلیم احواز وشور شدن آبها، تخلیه فاضلاب های شهری وصنعتی وکشاورزی در رودخانه های اقلیم احواز برای میهمانان شرح داده شد.
علاوه براین، سیاست های یکسانی سازی فرهنگی و نژادپرستی رایج در ایران وتحقیر غیرفارس ها و تبعیض همه جانبه اعمال شده علیه ملل غیرفارس، به شکل کاملی شرح داده شد.
قابل ذکر است که درهفته های اخیر دولت مرکزی ایران به دلیل نگرانی از گسترش فعالیت های افشاگرانه فعالان سیاسی غیرفارس در سوئد، به واسطه تماس های تلفنی این اشخاص را تهدید کرده است. همچنین نشریاتی مملو از اتهامات ساخته وپرداخته سازمان اطلاعات را علیه این فعالان نظیر محمود بلجین از رهبران حزب دموکرات آزربایجان جنوبی، در کشورهای اروپایی منتشر کرده است.
The Iranian regime has used a recent militant attack on a pipeline to widen arrests of Ahwazi Arabs with at least arrested this morning (18 November), including a prominent poet.
- Mohammad Sayahi
- Kamal Moghadam
- Saud Sayahi
- Jasem Mazraeh (Mazreawi)
- Latif Torfi
- Hani Sawaedi
- Hossein Motairi
- Hatam Helalat
- Moslem Shejirat
- Kazem Bawi
- Jawad Neisi
Arrests of at least 17 other Ahwazi Arabs were reported in Mashali, Darwishiya, Khozami and Hey-althowra on Sunday morning.
In addition, Adel Mowla Atshani (25, son of Ismaiel) was arrested by intelligence services in Hamidiyeh City on 12 November. According to recent reports, his family home has been raided and he is being tortured.