American Leaders' Support for Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani Grows
On behalf of Pastor Youcef, the ACLJ wishes to publicly thank the following elected officials for their statements this week calling on Iran to grant Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani an unconditional release:
- Speaker of the House John Boehner (OH-8)
- Congressman James Lankford (OK-5)
- Congressman Randy Forbes (VA-4)
- Congressman Trent Franks (AZ-2)
- Senator Marco Rubio (FL)
- Congressman Mike Kelly (PA-3)
- Congressman Jim Jordan (OH-4)
- Congressman Mike Pence (IN-6)
- Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission Co-Chairs, Congressmen James McGovern (MA-3) and Frank Wolf (VA-10)
- Senator David Vitter (LA)
- Congressman John Fleming (LA-4)
- Senator Jerry Moran (KS)
- Congressman Alcee Hastings (FL-23)
- Senator Roy Blunt (MO)
Congressman Robert Aderholt (AL-4) has sent a letter directly to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei calling for Pastor Youcef's release, stating, "In our age, no civilized nation should force a man to deny his faith or die." Congressmen Randy Forbes (VA-4), Jeff Fortenberry (NE-1), Trent Franks (AZ-2), Joe Pitts (PA-16), and Frank Wolf (VA-10) have also signed on to this letter.
Congressmen Joe Pitts (PA-16) and Heath Shuler (NC-11) are leading a bipartisan effort to send a letter to Secretary of State Clinton calling on her to pressure Iran for Pastor Youcef's release. Dozens of Members of Congress from both parties have signed on to this letter. You can learn more here.
Governors Mitt Romney and Rick Perry have also released statements calling for Pastor Youcef's unconditional release. Romney called Iran's actions an "outrage against humanity," and Perry called on the United Nations to "work toward securing the release of Pastor Nadarkhani."
In addition to these elected officials, we are grateful to White Press Secretary Jay Carney for expressing the White House's support for Pastor Youcef's release.
We are also glad that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has condemned Iran's actions toward Pastor Youcef. However, it is the duty of the State Department to do more. As our top diplomat for international matters, Secretary Clinton must specifically and aggressively work for his unconditional release. You can sign our petition to Secretary Clinton here.
It remains crucial for our elected officials to continue sounding the alarm on behalf of Pastor Youcef, and for all of us to continue praying for his safety.