"We were so grateful to read the (Canadian Foreign) Minister's statement which was so timely and so strong -- making it clear to Iran that it cannot violate the rights of the
Bahá'ís with impunity-- and I am sure that it will reassure the Bahá'ís of
Iran to know that countries such as Canada are speaking out on their behalf.
"Having said so - it is a bright point on a very dark horizon. The
imprisonment without cause of the entire leadership of this beleaguered
community is a cause of grave concern.
"It comes on the heels of a sharp increase in violent attacks against Bahá'ís
and their properties and several death threats ostensibly carried out by non-state actors. Having stirred up prejudice against the Bahá'ís in a long series of articles vilifying the Bahá'í Faith and its members published in government-controlled press, government officials have been warning Bahá'ís that they won't be able to hold back the population whose sensibilities the Bahá'ís have offended."
(Received on May 17, 2008)