Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani may face new charges

After 1,000 days in prison,
Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani may
be facing new charges. 
July 8 marked 1,000 days since Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani was imprisoned. After 1,000 days, his life on earth remains in jeopardy as he may face fresh charges pertaining to crimes against national security and possibly blasphemy, reports Christian Solidarity Worldwide.

Judges have reportedly received instructions to try Pastor Nadarkhani on new, trumped up charges in order to make his sentence appear more acceptable.

A date for the new trial may have been set for September 8.

Pastor Nadarkhani is currently in prison facing the death sentence for apostasy, which was upheld following an appeal at the Supreme Court. He was arrested in his home city of Rasht in 2009, soon after questioning the Muslim monopoly of religious instruction for children, which he felt was unconstitutional.

His case has twice been referred to the Supreme Leader of Iran, who has yet to issue a final ruling. He has been offered freedom in exchange for renouncing his faith on at least four occasions, but has consistently refused to do so.

Without the intervention of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, or Mr Sadegh Larijani, the Head of the Iranian Judiciary, who have the authority to halt an execution, the authorities are obliged to carry out the Supreme Court ruling, which stated that Pastor Nadarkhani could be executed if he refused to recant.

Please keep this pastor and his family in your prayers, and consider writing an encouraging letter to him. Send your letters to:

     Youcef Nadarkhani                                
     Lakan Prison                                            
     Rasht                                                      
     Islamic Republic of Iran

For more information and helpful tips on writing letters to prisoners of faith, click here.

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