- HRW, EU members Ban Ki Moon, Ahmed Shaheed , Amnesty , UN, Navi Pillay,
UPDATE aclj Apr. 15, 2013
It began last week. American Pastor Saeed Abedini, who is serving an eight-year prison term in Iran because of his Christian faith, has been suffering from internal bleeding for months - injuries received from the beatings in prison. In what could only be viewed as a cruel act of psychological abuse, prison officials took Pastor Saeed to a hospital last week - only to be turned away - and brought back to Evin prison without receiving medical treatment for his internal bleeding.
Now, comes word out of Iran, that the beatings and physical abuse are intensifying. Pastor Saeed reported today that last week he was severely beaten the same day the prison officials took him to the hospital. During the weekly prison visit today, Pastor Saeed's family reported that his physical condition is worsening - seeing first-hand the marks and symptoms left by the recent beating. These beatings and the internal injuries are causing Pastor Saeed frequent fainting spells. Iranian officials are telling Pastor Saeed it could be an additional two months before he will receive medical treatment. Such a delay is inhumane and a gross violation of Iran’s international obligations.
In addition to refusing to give Pastor Saeed the medical care he needs, it now appears authorities are stepping up their physical abuse and psychological torture. Pastor Saeed reported that cellmates, who appear to have connections to the Iranian intelligence police, recently threatened they would suffocate Pastor Saeed in his sleep, making his death look like an accident. The daily threat that his life could be taken by his internal injuries or by the hands of cellmates, weighs heavily on Pastor Saeed.
Full story here : http://aclj.org/iran/beatings-intensify-american-pastor-saeed-condition-worsens-in-iranian-prison
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UPDATE 23 MARCH , 2013
#US Secretary of State #Kerry Urges Release Of #Iran Pastor
RFE/RL March 23, 2013
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has called on Iranian authorities to immediately free an Iranian-American Christian pastor who has been sentenced to eight years in jail.
In a written statement, Kerry said he was "deeply concerned" about the fate of Saeed Abedini.
The top U.S. diplomat said he was "disturbed” by reports that Abedini has suffered physical and psychological abuse in prison, and that his condition has become increasingly dire.
The statement said “such mistreatment violates international norms as well as Iran's own laws."
Abedini, a naturalized U.S. citizen who converted to Christianity, was sentenced in late January.
He has denied charges of attempting to undermine Iranian state security by creating a network of Christian churches in private homes.
SOURCE : RFE / RL
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UPDATE HRANA 17 FEBRUARY 2013
Banning the bail of Saied Abedini and threatening it's provider
HRANA News Agency – The illegal Evin prosecutor banned the bail for Saied Abedini the Iranian-American pastor.
According to a report by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), also the islamic revolutionary guards interrogators threatened the person who tried to put bail to prevent this prisoner's furlough.
Saied Abedini is the Iranian-American who is accused to establishing home-church in 2009 and after his arrival to Iran in 2012 has been arrested by islamic revolutionary guards Etela'at and transferred to ward 2A.
More than eighty US senators from both Democrat and Republican parties on Thursday February 14th wrote a letter to John Kerry the United States Secretary of States and asked him to try to do all what is needed for freedom of Saied Abedini the Iranian-American pastor.
Translate by: Ramyar Hassani
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US Confirms Pastor Sentenced To 8 Years In Iran
RFE / RL January 28, 2013
The U.S. State Department has confirmed that Iranian authorities have sentenced an American Christian pastor of Iranian origin to eight years in prison.
Spokesman Darby Holladay said Washington is calling on Iran to respect Saeed Abedini's human rights and release him.
Earlier this month, Abedini reportedly went on trial on charges of attempting to undermine Iranian state security by creating a network of Christian churches in private homes.
The pastor, who is of Iranian origin but lives in the United States, denies the charges.
The U.S. spokesman said the State Department is in close contact with Abedini's family.
He also called on Iran to uphold the right of freedom of religion.
A rights group, the American Center for Law and Justice, has alleged that Abedini was beaten and tortured during his detention.
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Lies and a Conviction: Iran Mocks Justice, Convicts & Sentences American Pastor Saeed_Abedini
ACLJ Jan. 27, 2013
Our worst fears have been realized. This morning in Tehran on an empty promise that American Pastor Saeed Abedini might be released, his lawyer came to court. The lawyer had no formal notice that his presence was required, only the casual request less than 24 hours before from a court administrator to a family friend that the lawyer should come to the court because it was releasing Pastor Saeed. But this was all a lie.
Upon arriving at the court, Dr. Naser Sarbazi, Pastor Saeed’s lawyer, saw his client. He knew he had been deceived.
Without family present, Judge Pir-Abassi of Branch 26 of the Iranian Revolutionary Court, known as the “hanging judge,” verbally convicted and sentenced Pastor Saeed to eight years in prison for threatening the national security of Iran through his leadership in Christian house churches. The evidence provided was of Pastor Saeed’s Christian activities primarily during the early 2000s, when under President Khatami house churches were not perceived as a threat to Iran. Despite Iranian law requiring a written verdict, none was given.
Here’s the troubling reality: A U.S. citizen, who has been beaten and tortured since him imprisonment last fall, now facing eight years in Evin Prison, one of the most brutal prisons in Iran.
We represent Pastor Saeed’s wife, Naghmeh, and her two children who live in the U.S. Upon hearing this injustice, Naghmeh, said: “The promise of his release was a lie. We should not trust the empty words or promises put out by the Iranian government. These false hopes amount to psychological torture. You don’t want to trust them, but they build a glimmer hope before the crushing blow. With today’s development I am devastated for my husband and my family. We must now pursue every effort, turn every rock, and not stop until Saeed is safely on American soil.”
We know that with the Iranian Revolutionary Court, Pastor Saeed’s conviction and sentence had to be approved at the very top – The Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini had to sign off.
Iran has not only abused its own laws, it has trampled on the fundamentals of human rights. We call on the citizens of the world to rise up in protest. We call on governments around the world to stand and defend Pastor Saeed. As his wife has pleaded, starting with our own government, every effort must be pursued. We are calling on the State Department and the White House, which have both called for Pastor Saeed’s release, to engage further.
This is a real travesty. An U.S. citizen faces a lengthy prison term for simply because of his Christian faith. Pastor Saeed facing eight years in a harsh prison – likely facing life-threatening torture and abuse at the hands of the Iranian regime.
Please continue to pray for Pastor Saeed and his family. We will continue to utilize all of our efforts to see that justice is served and Pastor Saeed is safely in the arms of his loving wife and two children back home in the United States.
Jordan Sekulow is Executive Director of the American Center for Law and Justice.
SOURCE : ACLJ
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UPDATE: ACLJ Jan. 24, 2013
Iranian guards turned away the family of American Pastor Saeed Abedini this morning when they attempted to visit him in Evin Prison. They were told Saeed was not there.
On Monday, the first day of his trial and the only day he was allowed to be present and make a defense, Pastor Saeed’s attorney, Dr. Naser Sarbazi, asked that Saeed be moved from his current ward in Evin to ward 305, so that he could receive better medical treatment.
Judge Pir-Abassi told Saeed’s attorney that he would see to it. However, since then, no indication has been given to Saeed’s attorney or his family that this move would take place.
It's important to note this is one of Iran's “hanging judges” who told family members that Pastor Saeed would be released on bail. The fact is the family's repeated efforts to secure Pastor Saeed's bail have been flatly rejected by Iranian officials, and Judge Pir-Abassi’s own right-hand man threatened a family friend to stop assisting Pastor Saeed’s family.
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UPDATE JANUARY 16, 2013
Jailed U.S. Pastor Says He 'Will Hang' for His Faith
CBN January 16, 2013
An Iranian-born American pastor imprisoned in Iran is set to go on trial Monday, Jan. 21:
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UPDATE 22 December 2012
Iranian-American pastor imprisoned in Evin, Iran, without notice of charges
HRANA News Agency – Saeed Abedini, a 32-year-old Iranian who is a U.S. citizen and a Christian convert has been imprisoned without notice of any formal charges while visiting his family in Iran.
According to a report by Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA), The Rev. Saeed Abedini, is currently awaiting trial at Iran's notoriously brutal Evin Prison, where he has been incarcerated since late September.
He lives in the U.S. with his wife and two young children, was making one of his frequent visits to see his parents and the rest of his family in Iran, his country of origin and where he spent many years as a Christian leader and community organizer developing Iran's underground home church communities for Christian converts.
On this last trip, the Iranian government pulled him off a bus and said he must face a penalty for his previous work as a Christian leader in Iran.
In July, Abedini left his wife and kids to go to Iran to visit family and continue a humanitarian effort he began years ago to build an orphanage.
After a short visit to a nearby country, Abedini was traveling back into Iran to catch his flight back to the U.S. when members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard stopped his bus near the Turkey-Iran border and pulled Abedini from the bus, confiscating his passports and subjecting him to intense interrogation, according to his wife.
After weeks under house arrest and many calls to Iran's passport control office about the status of his confiscated passport, Abedini was told that his case has been referred to the Revolutionary Guard, the Iranian government's elite military force.
On Sept. 26, five men kicked open the door of Abedini's parents' residence in Tehran where they collected all communications devices and arrested him.
SOURCE : HRANA
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A Iranian-American pastor, Saeed Abedini, has reportedly been arrested and charged in Iran while visiting his family.
Reports say the 32-year-old Christian convert has been detained in Tehran’s Evin prison since late September.
The charges against him are not clear.
The American Center for Law and Justice, which is representing his wife, has alleged that Abedini was jailed because of his Christian faith.
The group says it is launching a campaign to demand the release of the pastor, who became a U.S. citizen in 2010.
Earlier this year, Iran released pastor Youcef Naderkhani, a Christian convert, who had reportedly been sentenced to death for apostasy for refusing to renounce his faith.
In the Islamic republic, a Muslim who converts to another faith can face the death penalty.