Ireland is participating in an international campaign to draw attention to the harrowing consequences of wrongful imprisonment.
By focusing on the fate of the “Bahá’í 7” the campaign entitled ‘Not Another Year’ will highlight the ways in which wrongful incarceration cuts into the lives of innocent prisoners everywhere.
The Bahá’í 7 are Fariba Kamalabadi, Jamaloddin Khanjani, Afif Naeimi, Saeid Rezaie, Mahvash Sabet, Behrouz Tavakkoli, and Vahid Tizfahm. Together they formed the entire membership of the now-disbanded group known as the “Yaran” (which in Persian means “Friends”). With the full knowledge and permission of the Iranian government, they tended to the spiritual and social needs of the Iranian Baha’i community – until in 2008 the Government changed its attitude.
Thrown into prison for their religious beliefs, the seven spent their first year in illegal detention and then, in 2010, were put on trial on false allegations of espionage, “propaganda against the regime,” and other alleged crimes that, in fact, were related solely to their belief in and practice of the Baha’i Faith.
Nine years later, they’re still in prison.
Nine years is a long time. It adds up to 108 months, 3,285 days, and each one of them spent in prison. During those nine years the seven have endured not only the grim conditions that are common in Iranian prisons but they have also missed out on the numerous day-to-day joys – and sorrows – that make life sweet and precious.
But who are they, these seven people? What are they like? Why are they really in prison? Why were they not paroled four years ago, as is normal under Iranian law?
Today and for the next eight days we will answer some of those questions about the “Bahá’í 7″.
As part of an effort to bring attention to the need for their immediate release, we are participating in the international campaign to call attention to their “missing years” – the nine long years during which they have been deprived of access to family life, to work, to freedom.
JOIN OUR TWITTER STORM TOMORROW SATURDAY 13th MAY FROM 2 – 4 PM #ReleaseBahai7Now