Bahai followers face spy charges in Iran

TEHRAN, Feb. 18 (UPI) -- Seven imprisoned leaders of the Bahai faith in Iran have been accused of espionage an official said.

CNN reported Wednesday the religious leaders are accused of spying for Israel, the Islamic republic's archenemy.


"One of their accusations is that they had cooperated with Israel. Generally, the Bahais are accused of this," said Shirin Ebadi, an Iranian rights activist who won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize.

Ebadi's team at the Center for Defenders of Human Rights in Iran has taken their case, CNN reported.

The Iranian government considers Bahai to be a heretical faith. CNN noted that its followers have been accused of espionage previously.

Iran's Prosecutor General Dorri-Najafabadi said Sunday "there is irrefutable evidence that adherents of the Bahai sect are in close contact with the enemies of the Iranian nation."

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