US-based Zoroastrian priest killed in Iran

A Zoroastrian priest who resided in the United States has been killed on a visit to Iran, the country’s judiciary says in local media reports.

The body of Arash Kasravi was found in the central province of Kerman alongside those of two other people who were not members of the religious minority, the province’s prosecutor is quoted as saying.

“Three bodies were discovered in a villa in Mahan city and they were apparently murdered,” Dadkhoda Salari tells state television.

“Investigations showed that one of them was Arash Kasravi, a member of the Zoroastrian religious minority,” he adds.

The prosecutor does not disclose the identity of the two others who were slain.

But he adds that the murder seemed financially motivated, and noted that $10,000 (8,500 euros) was found in one of the victims’ cars.

Iran’s Etemad newspaper says Kasravi was a US resident who had been living in California with his family for the past 10 years.

The daily says he had returned to Iran last year to attend his father’s funeral and stayed for inheritance proceedings but disappeared days ago with two “friends” before being found dead.

Zoroastrianism was the dominant religion in Persia prior to the arrival of Islam, but according to government figures only counted about 25,000 adherents in 2018.

It is officially recognized as a minority religion in Iran, along with Christianity and Judaism.


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