Baha’i Arash Nabavi Sentenced to Imprisonment and Additional Punishments

Arash Nabavi, a Baha’i citizen residing in Isfahan, has been sentenced by the Revolutionary Court of this city to ten years of imprisonment, a fine, confiscation of property, and other penalties.

Based on a verdict issued by Branch 1 of the Revolutionary Court of Isfahan, presided over by Mohammadreza Tavakoli, and communicated to Mr. Nabavi, he has been sentenced to five years of imprisonment and a fine for the charge of “membership in groups to disrupt national security.” Additionally, for the charge of “propaganda activities against Islamic law”, he has been sentenced to another five years of imprisonment. As supplementary punishment, he has also been sentenced to a two-year ban on online acitvities, prohibition from leaving the country, and confiscation of property.
Three mobile phones, three flash drives, two tablets, three SIM cards, and several books and materials related to the Baha’i Faith are among the items ordered to be confiscated in the verdict.

This Baha’i citizen was arrested on August 14, 2023, and released after two months on bail. During the arrest, the officers searched his house and seized some of Mr. Nabavi’s personal belongings.

Arash Nabavi, single and approximately thirty-eight years old, lives the “Imam Neighborhood” in Isfahan.

Baha’is are subjected to violations of their religious rights, comprising 82% of reports on infringements against religious minorities, according to HRA’s 2023 annual report.

The Baha’i faith is not recognized as a legitimate religion by Iranian authorities, leading to systematic and longstanding violations of the rights of Baha’is in the country. This includes the denial of their fundamental right to practice their religion, which constitutes a clear breach of both Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The United Nations covenant holds that every person has the right to freedom of religion, freedom of converting religion, as well as freedom of expression, individually or collectively; openly or secretly.