HRANA News Agency – Sunni Muslims were barred from holding congregational Eid prayers in parts of Tehran yesterday, with security forces preventing them from entering buildings they had rented for prayer.
According to the report of Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), security forces were deployed early in the morning around Sunni prayer sites in parts of Tehran on 5 October 2014, the day Iran celebrated Eid al-Adha, and prevented Sunni Muslims from entering prayer sites in the Sadeghiya district in northwest Tehran, and in Sa’adat Abad, north Tehran.
Despite Sunnis being the largest religious minority in the Shia majority Iran, with records indicating that there are more than a million Sunnis living in Tehran alone, the Iranian government has prevented a Sunni mosque from being built in Tehran.
According to the website of the British newspaper ‘The Guardian’; “There is currently no Sunni mosque in the capital, despite there being several churches and synagogues for much smaller Christian and Jewish populations.”
The Sunni citizens of Tehran are instead forced to use rented rooms and spaces as ‘namaz khaneh’ (prayer rooms) to hold obligatory Sunni congregational prayers, with restrictions forcing some to organize Sunni prayers in their own homes and private spaces.