Baha’i walk about re­li­gious free­dom in Iran

Central Leader - - NEWS -

Around 200 peo­ple are ex­pected to join a peace walk in­tended to draw at­ten­tion to the plight of mi­nor­ity re­li­gions in Iran.

Peo­ple from all ages and eth­nic­i­ties are be­ing en­cour­aged to join the Baha’i Free­dom Walk this Sun­day.

The 15km peace­ful walk starts in Mt Eden and or­gan­is­ers say it is a sym­bolic ges­ture de­signed to high­light the trou­bles faced by mem­bers of the Baha’i faith and other mi­nor­ity re­li­gions in Iran.

The Ira­nian government re­fuses to ac­knowl­edge the Baha’i faith as a re­li­gion and has deemed it a po­lit­i­cal or­gan­i­sa­tion.

Mem­bers of the re­li­gious mi­nor­ity reg­u­larly ex­pe­ri­ence per­se­cu­tion and hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions.

Auck­land is one of a num- ber of cen­tres around the coun­try that is hold­ing the sol­i­dar­ity walks, which are timed to co­in­cide with United Na­tion’s Hu­man Rights Day on Mon­day.

Or­gan­iser and Baha’i mem­ber Max­ine Chan says it is a way of ex­press­ing con- cern for the Baha’is abroad.

‘‘Most are well re­spected educators and com­mu­nity work­ers who en­dure long, in­hu­mane and un­just prison sen­tences solely be­cause of their be­liefs.’’

She says there are about 120 Ira­nian Ba­hai’s impr- isoned be­cause re­li­gion.

The Baha’i Free­dom Walk is on De­cem­ber 9 from 8.30am.

It be­gins at Ta­haki Re­serve and fol­lows a 15km route that con­cludes back at the re­serve in Mt Eden.

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