Concluding Observations Human Rights Committee CCPR/C/IRN/CO/3 para 24
Full recommendation
The State party should ensure full respect for the freedom of everyone, including members of
the Baha’i community, to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his or her choice, and the
freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest
this religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching. The State party should
take immediate steps to ensure that members of the Baha’i community are protected against
discrimination in every field, that violations of their rights are immediately investigated, that
those found responsible are prosecuted and that they are provided with effective remedies.
Assessment using Impact Iran human rights indicators1
A. Freedom of everyone to have or to adopt a religion or belief, including members
of the Baha’i community
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran names the Twelver Ja’fari School of Shia
Islam as the state religion (Article 12).2 Article 13 of the Constitution provides that the
Zoroastrian, Jewish, and Christian Iranians “are the only recognized religious minorities”
under Iranian law. Additionally, Article 19 of the Constitution guarantees that all people
enjoy equal rights, “whatever the ethnic group or tribe to which they belong” and that “color,
race, language, and the like, do not bestow any privilege”.3 However, the Constitution omits
an explicit provision recognizing religion or belief as a protected characteristic. As a
consequence, because the Baha’is are not recognized under Iranian law, they have no legal
safeguards to protect the practice of their religion.
Since 2013, 521 Baha’is have been reportedly arrested solely because of their religious
beliefs.4 As of the end of June 2019, there were reportedly 49 Baha’is arbitrarily detained in
the Islamic Republic of Iran. 5 On 1 January 2019, nine Baha’i citizens were condemned for a
total of 48 years of prison by the court of appeal of Isfahan on charges of “membership of the
illegal Baha’i community and propaganda against the regime by spreading the Baha’i faith in
the society”.6 Members of the Baha’i faith in trial often face violations of the due process of
their judicial proceedings.7 The constant threat of arrests and detention or imprisonment, is a
1

CCPR.18.1.S.1; CCPR.18.2.S.1; CCPR.18.3.S.1;
CCPR.18.1.P.1; CCPR.18.2.P.1; CCPR.18.3.P.1;
CCPR.18.O.4; CCPR.18.2.O.1;CCPR.18.3.O.1
2
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, English translation,
http://www.iranchamber.com/government/laws/constitution_ch01.php
3
The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, English translation,
http://www.iranchamber.com/government/laws/constitution_ch03.php
4
Baha’i International Community https://www.bic.org/sites/default/files/pdf/iran/the_bahais_of_iran__a_persecuted_community.pdf
5
Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran, 18 July 2019,
https://documents-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N19/222/62/PDF/N1922262.pdf?OpenElement
6
Baha’i International Community www.bic.org/sites/default/files/pdf/iran/overview_of_persecution-0119_2.pdf
7
Baha’i International Community, https://www.bic.org/focus-areas/situation-iranian-bahais/current-situation

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