Article

  • Campaigners: Christian Persecution is Real in Iran—Accept Their Asylum Requests
    Many Christian converts seeking asylum, even after leaving Iran, have been painfully dealing with the denial of protection by their countries of destination for years now. About a year ago, a group of Christian converts living in Stockholm launched the campaign “I am a Christian too” to raise awareness of the systematic violation of rights of Christian converts in Iran and to change the approaches used to examine Christians’ asylum applications. These Christian converts have been staging regular protest rallies outside parliament in the Swedish capital of Stockholm for about 70 days. The campaign also protests the ongoing human rights abuses in Iran and the repression of civil society activists […]
  • Sabean-Mandaeans and Emigration: Motives and Reasons
    Behnaz Hosseini*–Sabean-Mandaeans are one of the numerous religious minorities in Iran. Despite being considered by some high-ranked religious clerics as one of the monotheistic religions, it is not recognized by the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Constitution. They are emigrating at increasing rates, with inflows mainly to European countries, the United States, and Australia. Difficult living conditions, lack of civil liberties, and religious discrimination are the major motives to emigrate. The number of the Sabean-Mandaeans, according to non-official statistics, has dropped to just 2,000 people. It was estimated at 10 to 20,000 before the Islamic Revolution. One of the religious rituals of the Mandaeans is “Daily Baptism”, which is often performed […]
  • Baha’i villagers ordered to “separate their cows from the ones belonging to Muslims”
    The persecution of Baha’i villagers became “stranger than fiction” when the Baha’is were ordered to “go to Israel ” and separate their own cows from cows belonging to Muslims in Ivel, a village in Mazandaran Province.  This issue of systematic expropriation of the Baha’is in Iran and in Ivel was highlighted during a webinar hosted by Evin Incir, a Member of the European Parliament (MEP), from the Swedish Social Democratic Party on the 4th of February 2021.  The panelists included Miloon Kothari (former UN Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing), MEP Antonio Lopez-Isturiz White, Member of the Swedish Parliament Anders Österberg, and Diane Alai (Representative of the Bahá’í International Community Geneva). […]
  • White Torture, a Story about the Suffering and Resistance of the Iranian Christians
    Mvoices conducted an interview with Mansour Borji, executive director of Article 18, a London-based Christian advocacy organization that helps former Christian prisoners overcome trauma, about how former prisoners survive this psychological torture and the challenges that they face after being released from the Islamic Republic’s torture chambers. White torture is a psychological torture technique, in which inmates are held in solitary confinement for very long periods of time. It is intended to produce complete sensory deprivation and isolation in the victim. It is one of the most brutal torture methods used in Iranian prisons alongside physical torture. Many Iranian prisoners of conscience, including Christians, Bahais, journalists, women and civil rights […]
  •  “For many Iranians, Atheism is equal to Satanism”
    We are going to invite a variety of people, including equal rights activists, researchers and journalists, to share their experiences and their views on the challenges, achievements and rights of the religious minorities and civil society in Iran at the Mvoices’ “Carte Blanche”. For this number, we have invited Sepideh Nasseri, a civil rights activist, artist, and atheist based in Sweden, to share her experience of being an atheist in Iranian society: Let’s start with the problems atheists face in Iran. According to a recent poll by the GAMAAN Institute in the Netherlands, 9% of Iranians have claimed/claim to be atheists, and only 32% of Iranians consider themselves the followers […]
Articles

voices

  • “Impure” Zoroastrians Banned from Swimming Pool
    The Iranian citizens in “Your Voice” talk about the discrimination against religious minorities that they have witnessed. They provide short stories about the suffering of millions, who have become “simple incidents” in Iran. This is a story of Niloofar and three other 8-10 year old Zoroastrians girls, 30 years ago in the city of Yazd, who were told that they were “impure” and could not swim at the public swimming pool again. Cleanness and Cleanliness have always been the most important principles for our family, since our Iranian ancestors have frequently underlined the importance of avoiding contamination of water, soil, air and fire; I learned many things from my family about cleanliness […]
  • The day that  Baha’i Nurses Were Fired
    The Iranian citizens in “Your Voice” talk about the discrimination against religious minorities that they have witnessed. They provide short stories about the suffering of millions, who have become “simple incidents” in Iran. Alireza, a resident of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, said (video is in Persian) in 1983 that he was an accountant at a hospital when, one day, he was surprised to see a veteran nurse come to his office to settle accounts after her resignation. In the following days, other experienced nurses resigned one by one. Alireza’s patience ran out, and he asked one of the nurses why she was resigning. The nurse cried and said: “You do not […]
Voices

book

  • “The Burden of Baggage”, Cultural Challenges of Iranian Christian converts
    In “The Burden of Baggage”, Roy Oksnevad, a church pastor, writer and missionary conducted surveys among different Iranian churches outside of Iran. He presents an insightful look inside the community of first-generation converts. He shows how Iranian culture carries over into the church and impacts both its strengths and vulnerabilities. Roy Oksnevad (PhD Intercultural Studies) was the director of the Muslim Ministry Program at the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism and started a coalition of ministry to Muslims in North America. His missionary work has been to Muslims, especially among first-generation Iranian Christians.  The number of Christians in Iran is “without a doubt in the order of magnitude of several […]
  • Sufis and Their Opponents in the Persianate World
    The contents of Sufis and Their Opponents in the Persianate World, published in 2020,  is based on the conference ‘Sufis and Mullahs: Sufis and Their Opponents in the Persianate World’, organized in 2016 by Leonard Lewison and Reza Tabandeh at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies (IAIS) at the University of Exeter, which brought together scholars on Sufism from around the world. The book contains about 600 pages covering various aspects of “the Sufi/anti-Sufi opposition in a large historical timeframe and vast geographical expanse”. The book’s contents are divided into five main sections including Medieval Persia and early modern central Iran, Anatolia, Mongol, Timurid, and Safavid Persia, Qajar Persia […]
Books

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