Category: Iran

Iran Christians Jailed, Bibles “Burned”

Human rights violations Iran Five Iranian house church Christians were behind bars Wednesday, March 15, after being sentenced to one year imprisonment on charges of “crimes against the Islamic order” and there were reports that Iranian authorities have been burning Bibles.

The attacks come amid wider reported pressure on groups deemed dangerous by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government.

Threat of Prosecution Remains for Some Christians Freed in Iran

Islam In December and January authorities arrested up to 120 believers after Iranian religious and political figures acknowledged the existence of home fellowships and condemned them as a threat to the state. Sources estimate at least 62 of those arrested during late December and January have been released, some on bail. A typical bail amount in Iran can range between a few thousand dollars and the deed on a house.

Some of the Christians who were released reported they were subjected to solitary confinement and harsh interrogation, according to a statement by Elam Ministries on Feb. 4. The statement said some Christians held at Section 209 of Tehran’s notorious Evin Prison suffered up to 34 days in solitary confinement.

Vatican: stoning in Iran adultery case ‘brutal’

The Vatican raised the possibility Sunday of using behind-the-scenes diplomacy to try to save the life of an Iranian widow sentenced to be stoned for adultery.

In its first public statement on the case, which has attracted worldwide attention, the Vatican decried stoning as a particularly brutal form of capital punishment.

Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi said the Catholic church opposes the death penalty in general.

It is unclear what chances any Vatican bid would have to persuade the Muslim nation to spare the woman’s life. Brazil, which has friendly relations with Iran, was rebuffed when it offered her asylum.

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani was convicted in 2006 of adultery. In July, Iranian authorities said they would not carry out the stoning sentence for the time being, but the mother of two could still face execution by hanging for adultery and other offenses.

Our view: the death penalty is a barbaric form of punishment that should be rejected by all civilized nations — as should the Shariah. Islamic law is incompatible with Western civilization.

Protests planned worldwide against execution of Iranian woman

Hundreds of protesters will gather worldwide Saturday to rally against the imprisonment and possible execution of an Iranian woman convicted of adultery.

The case of Sakineh Mohammedie Ashtiani has drawn international attention. She was convicted of adultery in 2006 and faces the possibility of execution.

Ashtiani was originally sentenced to death by stoning, but it was put on hold earlier this month after an international outcry.
Despite the sentencing delay, human rights activists want to remind the world of Ashtiani’s plight, said Mina Ahadi, chairman of the International Committee Against Execution and Stoning, one of the groups leading Saturday’s protests.

“The fact is, the execution can still happen,” Ahadi said. “And, often times in Iran, these types of executions will happen without any notice.”

Earlier this month, Ashtiani’s lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, told CNN that she confessed to the crime after being subjected to 99 lashes.

She later recanted the confession and has denied wrongdoing, he said.

Most civilized countries view the death penalty as a barbaric practice and a violation of human right.

Iran Pastor Facing Execution, Church Official

Human rights violations Iran A well-known Iranian pastor faces execution after two judges agreed to make him “liable to capital punishment,” as part of a crackdown on the growing Protestant church movement in the Islamic nation.

Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani was detained in June along with wife Fatemeh Pasandideh in the city of Rasht in northwestern Iran because of their Christian activities, Iranian Christians said.

Iran Releases Christian Converts On Bail

Islam A group of ex-Muslims who converted to Christianity were preparing Wednesday, September 16, for an upcoming court hearing in Iran on suspicion of “apostasy”, after they were temporarily released on bail from one of the country’s most notorious prisons, BosNewsLife learned.

They were among 25 individuals arrested by security forces while attending a Christian gathering in Tehran.

Iran Releases American Vatican Radio Reporter Roxana Saberi

Roxana Saberi American Iranian free-lance journalist Roxana Saberi who reported for Vatican Radio and other international media has been freed from a Tehran prison, amid international pressure, her attorney confirmed Monday, May 11.

The 32-year-old dual American-Iranian national had been in detention for nearly three months. On April 18, Iran’s Revolutionary Court charged her with spying for the United States and sentenced her to eight years in prison.