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Gratitude and hope
06:52 PM, Jul. 31, 2012

REBECCA BURKART, GWEN COBB KOUSARI. BEHROUZ KOUSARI, SARAH MAHBOUBI

On behalf of the Baha’is of Indiana’s 6th Congressional District
Earlier in the year, members of the Baha’i Faith in Indiana’s Sixth Congressional District were pleased that Rep. Mike Pence joined with Republican and Democratic colleagues in cosponsoring House Resolution 556, condemning Iran for its persecution of Iranian Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani. The pastor, who converted from Islam to Christianity, had been sentenced to death for apostasy, but because of international outcry, received a lesser sentence .
That same resolution noted that members of the Baha’i Faith, as well as other religious minorities, have experienced persecution by the government of Iran .
Currently, House Resolution 134, “condemning Iran for its state-sponsored persecution of its Baha’i minority and its continued violation of the International Covenants on Human Rights,” is under consideration in the House Foreign Affairs Committee and its MESA (Middle East and South Asia) subcommittee, of which Pence is the vice chairman .
Our fellow Baha’is in Iran have no one in Iran to defend them or to ameliorate their suffering. Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, these peace-loving people, who revere all world faiths, have experienced every manner of persecution .
Without public and congressional outcry, such as House Resolutions 556 and 134, the fate of members of minority religions in Iran is grim .
We urge Congressman Pence to speak out on behalf of religious freedom and human rights — which we cherish so dearly in the United States — and to lend his support to House Resolution 134 by becoming a co-sponsor .

http://www.thestarpress.com/article/20120801/OPINION03/308010014

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