Mr. Speaker, I am very concerned about the international human rights situation. Still today, too many people are being oppressed because of their religious beliefs, their political opinions or their nationality. The Baha’is are one example, and those in my riding are worried about the fate of the Baha’i community in Iran. Since 2004, 545 people have been imprisoned for no other reason than their religious convictions.
The Iranian government considers these people threats to the nation, even terrorists. For 46 months now, seven teachers have been detained without just cause. Despite a strong show of support by the international community, Iran continues to persecute people who self-identify as Baha’i, even though their religion promotes peace and unity.
Today, I again call on the president of Iran and the chargé d’affaires and head of mission, Mr. Sheikh-Hassani, to put a stop to the oppression and wrongful imprisonment of members of the Baha’i community. I also call on the government to do more to help these people.