New Film on Persecution of Baha'is to be Released Just as Iran Slaps Harsh Sentences on Baha'i Educators

Riaz Sobhani

BIHE teacher Riaz Sobhani

Say what you want about the Iranian government, but you just can’t fault their flawless timing.

One would think that a country that at this very moment is having its human rights record scrutinized by the UN Human Rights Committee in Geneva would be on its best behavior. But in just the past few days Iranian courts have not only confirmed the outrageous sentence against renowned film director Jafar Panahi and handed women’s rights activist Fereshteh Shirazi a prison sentence of three years, but also sentenced seven educators with the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education (BIHE) to a total of thirty years in prison. One might almost think Iran even coordinated the handing down of the sentence with the release of a new documentary that addresses the very issue of the persecution of Iran’s Baha’i community and their systematic exclusion from higher education.