Dozens of young Iranian Baha’is have been banned from education at the start of the new academic year.
This comes after the Iranian regime’s Minister of Education said that followers of “unofficial” religions were banned from education, asking Baha’i students to deny their faith in order to continue their education.
“If students declare that they are followers of a religion other than the official religions of the country and this action is regarded as promoting (that religion), they are banned from attending school,” Mohsen Haji Mirzaei said on September 11.
A human rights group recently identified 22 young Iranian Baha’is banned from education and attending university after participating in Iran’s 2019 nationwide university entrance exams.
Iran’s Baha’is are also banned from working in government institutions and their private places of business have been systematically shut down by the regime.
Unofficial sources say that there are more than 300,000 people following the Bahá’í Faith in Iran. However the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran only recognizes Islam, Christianity, Judaism and Zoroastrianism and does not recognize Baha’ism.
Since the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, Iranian Baha’is have been systematically persecuted as a matter of government policy. During the first decade of this persecution, more than 200 of Iran’s 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.
The persecution of Iran’s Baha’is is still ongoing with dozens of Baha’is languishing in Iranian prisons throughout Iran.