The Crush Continues: Rouhani and the Ban on Baha’i Education



“You’re fired.” Baha’i professors and teachers are not able to teach in Iranian universities“You’re fired.” Baha’i professors and teachers are not good to teach in Iranian universities

President Hassan Rouhani and his polity have failed to ease pressure up~ the body Iran’s Baha’i community. In fact, in some cases, the persecution in compensation for Iran’s largest religious minority has intensified. Since Rouhani and his the government have been in power, 28 Baha’i students hold been expelled from universities and thousands greater degree of have been denied the opportunity toward a higher education.

Rouhani has upheld the diffuse-established government campaign to ban Baha’is from pursuing farther education — even though this is not at all presented in public as official address. “On every front the Iranian dominion is facing pressure to end the decades-lingering, systematic persecution of Baha’is,” before-mentioned a report published by the Baha’i International Community put ~ October 25, 2016. But Iran’s efforts to disintegrate the religious minority have continued unabated— contumacy President Hassan Rouhani’s promises to cessation religious discrimination.

The report also outlined in what state tactics had changed in recent years. “The commonwealth has shifted its strategy of cruelty, moving away from arrests and imprisonments to greater quantity easily obscured measures such as housekeeping and educational exclusion.” It goes without ceasing to emphasize that “Baha’is are blocked from obtaining higher training through a series of bureaucratic ruses and mandated expulsions granting that they identify themselves as Baha’is.”

Grafitti in Tehran: “Death to Baha’is”Grafitti in Tehran: “Death to Baha’is”

The Early Days of BIHE, and Expulsions en Masse

Mona is a seminary of learning professor who teaches at the Baha’i Institute notwithstanding Higher Education (BIHE), an underground universal school set up in 1987 in response to Baha’is’ exclusion from higher nurture in Iran. “Since our wealth were limited, we couldn’t take . everybody,” she says, “in the same state we decided to have entrance exams. We could but offer courses for which we had fit teachers. Our first technical course was polite engineering and the first applied menses were pharmacology, dentistry and chemistry. But since in Iran BIHE diplomas are not recognized, graduates of dentistry could not customary course dentistry. Students started studying via fitting relation. Later on, we were able to bid other courses even though our wealth were still limited. We sent the textbooks and the accompanying booklets to students and they were required to cozen their homework in the allocated time and return it.”

Since its inception, the Islamic Republic has blocked Baha’is on the farther side from higher education. BIHE has if a partial solution, but it has likewise been the subject of targeted attacks from the regime’s stake forces.

Shortly after the Islamic Revolution came dilate of the so-called “cultural revolution” in 1980. Universities remained closed on account of three years and Baha’i teachers were expelled en masse. In the summer of 1984, the government re-opened universities and students were told to re-record. Lists of students barred from returning to university were posted on billboards, including the names of Baha’i students.

Later in that decade, more students who had been expelled appropriate to their political affiliations or activities were allowed back — but that no Baha’i student was granted this franchise unless they agreed to renounce their system of religion as a precondition. None of them were prepared to observe this.

So a small group of Baha’i teachers and professors unquestionable to establish BIHE. They had limited money and a shortage of teachers, if it were not that their problems extended way beyond this.  Both teachers and students were constantly threatened, arrested and jailed. In 1998, 11 of BIHE’s teachers and other employees were arrested. Security forces moreover raided more than 500 homes that had functioned in the same proportion that classrooms and seized documents and furniture.

In 2011, security forces launched a targeted campaigns to counterbalance Baha’is. They raided their homes and arrested 16 rabble in Tehran, Karaj, Isfahan and Shiraz. Among them were a designate by ~ of BIHE teachers and employees, who were given prison sentences of from three to five years.

But those dedicated to the pursuits of BIHE persevered. Today, it corpse active, a lifeline for Bahai’s in Iran. The Islamic Republic still refuses to recognize BIHE diplomas and degrees, if it were not that many educational institutions and employers encircling the world accept qualifications issued ~ dint of. BIHE.

Good For Conscription, but not For Education

Pedram is a take a degree of BIHE. “They do not remember as formerly known our diplomas,” he tells IranWire, “thus when we get a job we are discriminated to counter-poise. For example, our salary base is diminish. As a conscript, they would solely recognize my high school diploma. It is in truth. easier to get an exemption from soldier-like service if you only have a tall school diploma. The interesting thing is that that they take . us for military service, but not because education. My father always told me, ‘they did not admit you into university so I am not going to permit you to serve in the martial.’”

Before 2004, students applying in spite of university entrance exams were required to quality their religion on application forms. This order was removed in 2004. Suddenly in that place was hope that Baha’is could study afresh. But soon it emerged that this make some ~ in. was only limited to entrance exams, such those Bahai’s who did imitate further education were expelled after the persons cited as vouchers discovered their faith. Pedram was the same of those who took part in adit exams that year.

He talks on the eve his excitement, which later turned into despair. “That year everything was disrupted,” he says. “From early in the morning we took classes to prepare beneficial to the tests; we were consumed with university fever. My brother, who is three years older, and my other classmates and I whole registered for the exams. But at the time those of us who had traveled from other towns went to the Testing Organization to procreate our records, we were told that our dossiers were ‘incomplete’.” As the fresh Baha’i International Community report emphasizes, “Baha’is are blocked from obtaining higher schooling through a series of bureaucratic ruses and mandated expulsions granting that they identify themselves as Baha’is.”

In 2012, Reynaldo Galindo Pohl, e~ rapporteur of the UN Commission of Human Rights without interrupti~ Iran, visited the country. During his time there, a secret document came to sandy that provided some answers to the usage of Baha’i students. It was a directive passed ~ means of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution in 1990 that said Baha’is could register at pre-university schools “provided they do not noise abroad that they are Baha’is…Preferably they should have existence registered at schools with an ideologically lusty staff…In universities, both during registration and afterwards, they must be expelled suppose that it is proven that they are Baha’is.” The document was later published by Persian-language media outside Iran in 2015.

A Religious Duty

Baha’is regard the prosecution of education as a religious duty. But even in schools, long in the sight of they try to apply for further education, Baha’i students are subject to judgment and expulsion. As school’s essential can decide to expel a Baha’i student purely on grounds of his dependence. Baha’i students are forced to take and disappear courses on Islamic religious teachings.

“At control we had religious teachings classes as being other religious minorities,” says Pedram, “boundary not for us. I had to take Islamic classes. Our Koran teachers knew that I was a Baha’i and lowered my grades. Even the agency of other teachers would not constitution him budge. I remember in intermediate school I always had problems by religious education teachers. They all tried to join with me on ‘the right path’.”

Since the establishment of the Islamic Revolution nearly four decades since, Iranian governments have changed several spells. But the ban on higher tuition for Baha’is remains a unbroken, and shows no sign of future to an end.

Find about Not a Crime, every international campaign championing Baha’is’ up~ to education. 

Read the Baha’i International Community’s replete report here. 


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