SINCE 1979, IRANIAN members of the Bahá’í faith have faced a government-sponsored, systematic campaign of religious persecution in their homeland. Thousands have been killed and even more imprisoned for their religious beliefs. This is the true story of one young Mona, Angel of Shiraz.
Arrested at the age of 16 alongside her father and dozens of other Baha’is, Mona Mahmudnizhad endures months of physical and psychological torture at the hands of the fanatical regime of Ayatollah Khomeini in the Islamic republic of Iran. Their goal: to coerce them into recanting their faith. The crime, punishable by death, is nothing more than having beliefs that differ from those of the ruling Islamic regime.
Having a strong sense of her unique destiny, Mona is now caught in a life and death struggle between her freedom of conscience and the repressive demands of the Iranian Revolution.
Eight months after her arrest, without trial or council, Mona and nine other women are sentenced to death by hanging. On June 18th 1983, they are taken to an abandoned polo field in the darkness of night and are given one final chance to recant their faith. Mona, the youngest at 17, asks to be hanged last so she can pray for the strength of her companions.
In the end, Mona stands before the hangman's noose, says a prayer for humanity, and kisses the rope that will quickly draw her from this world. And we, who are left behind to gaze at those brilliant eyes, can only marvel at her victory and our loss.
This heart-wrenching and immensely powerful story of heroism has the ability to stir souls and move the hearts of people the world over. With social movements, charities and service projects in Mona’s memory being founded across the globe, it’s not long before Mona is a household name.
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