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Global Summit focuses on fostering inclusive societies
28 November 16

GENEVA — Building inclusive societies requires profound change in mindsets, stated the Baha'i International Community (BIC) in a keynote address at the recent Global Summit on Religion, Peace and Security held from 23 to 25 November at the Palace of Nations in Geneva

Exploring religion’s contribution to peace in Southeast Asia
18 November 16

JAKARTA — Religion has a unique contribution to make to social progress and the realization of peace. This is one of the ideas that the Baha’i International Community (BIC) Regional Office in Jakarta has been exploring since its establishment two years ago. “Religion and spirituality are deeply rooted in the hearts of Southeast Asian people,” explains Mr. Chong Ming Hwee, representative of the BIC Regional Office in Jakarta

Iran's human rights failures condemned by world community
16 November 16

UNITED NATIONS — The UN yesterday expressed serious concerns about "severe limits" on the right to freedom of religion or belief in Iran, and specifically about the ongoing persecution of Iranian Baha'is. The rebuke—the 29th such censure since 1985—came in an annual resolution on human rights in Iran, approved by a vote of 85 to 35 with 63 abstentions by the General Assembly's Third Committee

House of Worship inspires children and youth to plant for the future
08 November 16

BATTAMBANG, Cambodia — For months now, scores of volunteers from nearby communities in Battambang have gathered regularly to work on the landscaping of the local Baha'i House of Worship being constructed there. This spirit of collective service has become contagious. One sign of its spreading influence has been a welling up of enthusiasm and a wish among children to have their share in this historic development

Forced closure of shops in Iran on an unprecedented scale
07 November 16

Over one hundred Baha'i-owned businesses in cities across Iran, including Sari, Ghaemshahr, and Bandar Abbas, were sealed by Iranian authorities after they were temporarily closed to observe Baha'i Holy days on 1 and 2 November. This action took place despite recent statements made by the UN Special Rapporteur of Freedom of Religion and Belief, the UN Special Rapporteur on Iran, prominent Iranian lawyers (e.g. Dr. Abdol-Karim Lahidji and Dr

Courageous cleric divides painting, promotes unity
03 November 16

In recent years, individuals and groups from within and outside of Iran have raised the call for justice, human rights, and a culture of inclusion in the country. Though more and more voices are joining this chorus, it is still rare to see any vocal support from among Iran's ecclesiastical class. On occasions when a clerical figure in Iran does speak out in support of the rights of citizens and minorities, it can inspire hope in countless hearts

In Spain, quest for social progress draws on science and religion
28 October 16

BARCELONA — The Baha’i community of Spain has been exploring how to bring together different sectors of society—government, NGOs, academia, the private sector, and faith-based organizations—to collaborate for social progress. At the heart of this endeavor has been a conviction that, when oriented toward the betterment of society, a dialogue that engages science and religion can give rise to new and important insights necessary to navigate a rapidly changing world

Baha’i murdered in Iran—victim of religious hatred
26 October 16

In an appalling act of violence, a Baha’i has been stabbed to death by two men who admitted they attacked him because of his religious beliefs. Farhang Amiri, 63, was murdered outside his home on 26 September 2016 in the city of Yazd, Iran, where he and his family have long resided. On the previous night, two young men visited the residence of Mr. Amiri under the pretense of wanting to purchase his van. Mr. Amiri was not home

Mass urbanization demands reimagining community life, says BIC
21 October 16

QUITO, Ecuador — We need a fundamental reimagining of collective living, says the Baha'i International Community (BIC) in a statement released this week, titled "New Patterns of Community Life in an Urbanizing World". The statement addresses the Habitat III conference organized by the United Nations in Quito, which ended yesterday. This was the third UN conference on sustainable urban development, the first having taken place in Vancouver in 1976

Day 3: Looking to the future
17 October 16

SANTIAGO — As the sun rose behind the Andes, more than 250 people representing various indigenous populations of South America entered the newly-dedicated continental Baha'i Temple. The melodies of the choir permeated that sacred space, as Baha'i scriptures in Spanish and the Mapuche language, resounded through the Temple's auditorium, touching the hearts of those present

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