Akademiernas kommitté för mänskliga rättigheter uppmanar till hjälp för fängslade Bahá’í-medlemmar

I ett brev till iranska företrädare vädjar Akademiernas kommitté för mänskliga rättigheter till frigivning av Mahvash Sabet och Fariba Kamalabadi, båda tillhörande den religiösa minioriteten Bahá’í i Iran.

Mahvash Sabet och Fariba Kamalabadi har för andra gången dömts till tio års fängelse efter anklagelser om nationella säkerhetsrelaterade brott och de hålls i dag fängslade i Evin-fängelset i Iran. Kommittén uttrycker djup oro över att brottsanklagelserna och den efterföljande domen tycks grunda sig på deras religiösa övertygelse och deras tidigare ledande roller inom Bahá’í-samfundet.

Brevet i sin helhet:

Stockholm 15 November 2023

Your Excellency,

We, the Human Rights Committee of Sweden’s Scientific and Literary Academies, write to respectfully request your assistance with the cases of Iranian Baha’i psychologists Mahvash Sabet and Fariba Kamalabadi, who have been convicted on spurious national security-related charges and sentenced to 10 years in prison, for the second time, in connection with their peaceful exercise of internationally protected rights as members of the Baha’i faith, educators, and former leaders of the Iranian Baha’i community.

Ms. Sabet and Ms. Kamalabadi reportedly were arrested on July 31, 2022. We understand that the Ministry of Intelligence announced the following day that those arrested had been involved in espionage, propagated Baha’i teachings, and infiltrated educational institutions. In an hour-long closed trial that failed to meet international due process standards, they were convicted in November 2022, and their sentences were upheld in August 2023. We understand that Ms. Sabet and Ms. Kamalabadi remain held in Evin Prison, where conditions are known to be extremely harsh. Our concern is heightened by credible reports that both women were held in solitary confinement for several months following their arrest

In August 2022, U.N. human rights experts issued a public statement expressing their alarm about the increasing arbitrary arrests of members of the Baha’i faith in Iran, referencing Ms. Sabet and Ms. Kamalabadi. The women were reported to be among more than 1,000 Baha’is arrested in what appears to be a pattern of systematic religious persecution.

In light of the information above, we are greatly concerned that the criminal charges brought against Ms. Sabet and Ms. Kamalabadi and their conviction stem from their religious affiliation and the peaceful exercise of their rights to freedom of association and freedom of opinion and expression as former leaders and educators of the Iranian Baha’i community. These rights are protected under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which the Islamic Republic of Iran has ratified. Thus, we respectfully request your help in ensuring that Ms. Sabet and Ms. Kamalabadi are promptly released. In the interim, we ask you to ensure that their conditions of confinement are brought into conformity with the U.N. Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, including regular access to all needed medical treatment.

We thank you in advance, Your Excellency, for your attention to this important matter.

Respectfully yours,

Peter Pagin
Professor, Chairman of the Human Rights Committee of Sweden’s Scientific and Literary Academies

Akademiernas kommitté för mänskliga rättigheter består av representanter från Kungl. Vetenskapsakademien, Kungl. Vitterhets Historie och Antikvitets Akademien, Svenska Akademien och Sveriges unga akademi.