Iran: Four still in custody after authorities detained entire congregation at Christmas celebration
Posted by Marisol on January 2, 2012 10:05 AM
Like the cases of Pastor Nadarkhani and of Sakineh Ashtiani, this is another story Iran would like to go away so it can do as it pleases. That must not be allowed to happen. An update on  this story. "Concern over condition of four detainees arrested in AOG church of Ahwaz," from  Mohabat News, December 31 (thanks to  The Religion of Peace):
Following an attack on the Assemblies of God Church of Ahwaz which resulted in the arrest of a number of Christians and their children, concerns are growing over the conditions of four of these detainees.
How soon will we hear tacked-on charges aimed at deflecting sympathy for them? Remember that Ashtiani was sentenced to stoning for adultery, and then charged with murder. Nadarkhani was an apostate from Islam, but then  suddenly a "Zionist," "traitor," "rapist," and "brothel owner" as criticism of his death sentence for apostasy grew. Since then, authorities have proceeded against Ashtiani  for adultery, and Nadarkhani  for apostasy.
According to reporters of Iranian Christian News Agency, Mohabat News, concerns are growing over the unknown conditions of four of the people arrested during the attack on the AOG church of Ahwaz which took place almost one week ago.
The detainees include, Farhad Sabokroh, the Pastor of the AOG church of Ahwaz, his wife Shahnaz and two other ministers and converts called Naser Zamen-Dezfuli and Davoud Alijani who is called David. No reliable information is available regarding their health and conditions in the places where they are being held.
According to Mohabat News, on Friday 23 December, 2011 at 11 A.M., security agents of the intelligence ministry raided the AOG church of Ahwaz in a pre-organized manner. All attendees at the weekly service were arrested and transferred by bus to an unknown location.
This report indicates that the security agents, whose faces were covered, showed no mercy to the Sunday school children of the church, apprehending them together with their parents who were present at the church. This incident has caused serious mental injury to these children.
After some hours all detainees were freed once their personal details such as home addresses were recorded.
However, four of the detainees named above, are still being held. The latest report on their conditions indicates that Farhad Sabokroh and his wife suffer from varicose veins and their general health condition is not good. They were held in custody in the intelligence office until 28 December, 2011 were then separated and transferred to unknown locations and we have received no further update concerning them.
At least one of the abducted Christians may be an ex-Muslim:
The other two detainees are Naser Zamen-Dezfuli who is about 60 years of age and Davoud (David) Alijani who is 30. Before being arrested, Zamen-Dezfuli had his own business and Alijani was an engineer at a petrochemical site in Mahshahr port. After accepting Christ and applying Christian faith in his life, David was threatened and interrogated several times and was eventually fired from his engineering position.
The health conditions, whereabouts and fate of these Christians are unknown but it has been rumored that they might still be in the custody center of the intelligence office of Ahwaz or may have been transferred to Karoon prison of Ahwaz. Their families' efforts to obtain news concerning their whereabouts have yielded no information as yet.
This lack of news about their situation has resulted in a wave of anxiety among Christians, the detainees' families and especially the leaders of the churches in Iran. It's also being reported that the Ministry of Intelligence has even asked the leaders of the AOG church in Iran to not take any action in this regard....
Article printed from Jihad Watch: http://www.jihadwatch.org/2012/01/iran-four-still-in-custody-after-authorities-detained-entire-congregation-at-christmas-celebration.htmlURLs in this post: