Kidnapped in 1980 in Iran, Isaac Lahijani's fate remained unknown to his family for 26 years. His wife and three children say they wept for weeks and months, unable to hold a memorial for him because they had no information about his whereabouts. The Lahijani family continued living in grief until this September, when Farzaneh Lahijani was finally given an official letter from the Iranian government telling her of her husband's death.
In response to recent human rights violations perpetrated by the Iranian government, the House of Representatives passed an amendment brought to the floor by Congressman Brad Sherman during consideration of the foreign aid bill for fiscal year 2001. The amendment seeks to cut World Bank funding by $10 million to the Islamic Republic of Iran.
It was perhaps the most emotionally potent moment of the evening, as the elderly Rabbi Yedidiah Shofet, addressing his audience in Farsi, broke down and cried, his voice trembling, his frail body shaking.Representing the Nessah Cultural Organization, Shofet was part of a lineup of speakers appearing earlier this week at West Hollywood's Hollywood Temple Beth El, where - reacting to the July 1 verdict that sentenced 10 of the Shiraz 13 - local Jews met to demonstrate support for the prisoners and to condemn the actions of the Iranian government.