On 17th May Middle East Concern requested prayer for three Iranian Christians belonging to the self-styled “Church of Iran” network who were arrested on 13th May in Rasht. We are pleased to report that two were released on bail: Yasser on 28th May and Saheb on 29th May.
The three men were arrested after security agents raided the home of Yousef Nadarkhani, a church leader who attracted international attention when charged with apostasy and sentenced to death in 2010, although he was acquitted and released in 2013. Yousef and his wife Tina were arrested along with Yasser Mossayebzadeh. Yousef and Tina were released later that day, but Yasser remained in detention. Two other Christians, Saheb Fadaie and Mohammedreza Omidi, were then summoned to security offices and also detained in connection with the initial arrests.
Yasser and Saheb were both released at the weekend after posting bail equivalent to approximately US$33,000 each.
Mohammedreza remains in Lakan prison near Rasht. He was not given the option of posting bail, despite funds being available. It is not clear why his treatment is different to that of Yasser and Saheb.
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Those close to the three men thank those who have been praying and rejoice that Yasser and Saheb have been released. They request prayer that:
a. Mohammedreza will be released soon
b. God will give His peace to the men and their families, and that they will not come under undue pressure to leave the country
c. there will be no further action taken against Yousef Nadarkhani and his wife Tina
d. all officials involved will love mercy, act justly, learn about Jesus and choose to follow Him