Alluding to the political and social problems that the Sunnis of Iran have been facing for 42 years since the victory of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Shaikh Abdol-Hamid sent a letter to the Supreme leader of Iran informing and reminding him the main concerns of Sunnis. He said that Iranian Sunnis love their country, but their continuous problems force them to “lose hope”.
In his letter, the most influential Iranian Sunni leader mentioned that Sunnis of Iran defended and supported the Islamic Republic of Iran in the most difficult situations and played an important role in maintaining national unity and security.
In another part of his letter, Friday prayer leader of Sunnis in Zahedan said that 42 years after the victory of the Islamic revolution, the Sunnis of Iran are still facing many problems and concerns about civil rights, to the extent that they feel as lower-class citizens in the Islamic Iran.
“Sunnis of Iran are deprived of key positions as no Sunnis had been appointed as a cabinet minister, provincial governor, vice-president or presidential adviser, or as an adviser or representative of the Leader; their “limited use” in ministries, the armed forces and Sunni-populated provincial centers are examples of Sunni citizens’ problems”, said the eminent Sunni leader of Iranian Baluchistan.
President of Darululoom Zahedan referred to the Supreme Leader’s decree in response to his letter of 2017 and said that the letter of the Supreme Leader has been ignored by the officials, perhaps because it was not taken seriously or was not formally sent to officials as a notification.
Expressing his concerns on the emergence of a new state-run office which aims to control religious affairs of the Sunni community in Iran, Mawlana Abdol-Hamid stated: “Recently, a new office called the ‘Planning Council of Sunni Seminaries’ has been established which aims to monitor Sunni seminaries and mosques in all parts of the country, in villages and cities. It intends to put pressure on Sunni religious centers with the help of the judiciary and intelligence services, while according to the Article 12 of the constitution, all Islamic sects have religious freedom”.
“In all countries, the Endowment/Awqaf bureau is supposed to monitor religious affairs, and our Shiite brothers also follow their religious issue by the Awqaf bureau,” he added more.
Shaikh Abdol-Hamid wrote in his letter that the follow-ups in the previous decades show “decisions for Sunnis are made in certain places, and most of them are extralegal and arbitrary; it is the main problem.”
He noted that “collection of problems and concerns” of the Sunnis had gradually forced them to lose their morale despite being “very much in love with their homeland, giving sacrifices to defend their country and maintain national peace and solidarity”. So they utterly lose hope in the improvement of the situation.
While stating that his letter was only for benevolence, Shaikh Abdol-Hamid said that Sunnis call on the Supreme Leader to take wise measures to solve their problems as soon as possible.