(Washington, DC) – The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which is working to secure the release of American Pastor Saeed Abedini from an Iranian prison, said today Pastor Saeed is now facing new death threats from ISIS terrorists who are being held in the same Iranian prison where Pastor Saeed is being held. Pastor Saeed has been able to communicate to family members and let them know that he fears for his life after he was told the ISIS prisoners plan to murder him because of his Christian faith.
“This is an extremely dangerous development that puts Pastor Saeed’s life at grave risk,” said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ, which represents Pastor Saeed’s wife, Naghmeh, and their two children living in the U.S. “Not only is Pastor Saeed facing threats from Iranian militants who have imprisoned him because of his Christian faith, he now faces new and perhaps even more dangerous threats from Iraqi ISIS prisoners who want to murder Pastor Saeed because of his faith. We call on President Obama and Secretary Kerry to intervene immediately to secure Pastor Saeed’s release and to ensure that he is protected during this transfer to freedom. Pastor Saeed, who is approaching his second year of imprisonment in Iran, must be returned to his family without delay.”
Pastor Saeed, who continues to suffer from injuries sustained at the hands of his captors, revealed to family members this week that Iraqi ISIS members are now being held in Rajai Shahr Prison – in fact in the same prison ward where he is being held. Other prisoners have told Pastor Saeed that – if ISIS prisoners have the opportunity – they intend to murder Pastor Saeed because of his Christian faith. Pastor Saeed has told family members that he is currently in a separate section of the ward – removed from the ISIS terrorists – but is concerned that he will be subjected to the general prison population – including the ISIS terrorists – during a brief, daily exercise period in the prison yard. Pastor Saeed has said he will not leave his prison cell to go to the prison yard for fear of his safety. Due to the severe overcrowding and lack of supervision of the prisoners, Saeed communicated that he has had to hide inside his cell and rely on the protection of fellow prisoners when some of these extremists have ventured into his section on their return to the ward from these daily outings.
September 26th will mark two years since the 34-year-old Pastor Saeed – a U.S. citizen – was taken into custody, tried and convicted – sentenced to eight years for his Christian faith.
Pastor Saeed’s two young children – Jacob and Rebekka – have recorded a personal plea asking President Obama to bring their father home. That video is available here.
The ACLJ continues to work in this country and abroad to secure his safety and freedom. Thousands continue to add their names of support for Pastor Saeed by signing on to this petition for his freedom.
Led by ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow, the American Center for Law and Justice is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
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