Saeed Abedini, a Christian pastor imprisoned in Iran, was dragged out of a hospital where he was recuperating from torture, brutally beaten again, and then thrown into a jail cell, says his wife, Naghmeh Abedini.
"It's just been a really hard blow on me," Abedini told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"[Our] kids were actually excited that he was in the hospital. They think he's not a prisoner anymore. So, I haven't shared that information with them that he's back in prison," she said Wednesday.
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The Idaho resident is serving an eight-year prison sentence for trying to spread his Christian faith in Iran. He has served one year of that sentence.
Jordan Sekulow, executive director of the American Center for Law and Justice, who is attempting to secure Abedini's release, told Malzberg the nightmarish violence came as a shock.
"Saeed was going on almost three months being at a private hospital. He was under guard but certainly much better than being in an Iranian prison,'' Sekulow said.
"We woke up to the news that Saeed was violently and brutally dragged off to jail, in fact, at one point collapsed.''
He said one of the guards mentioned that the beating was the related to the ongoing U.S.-Iran nuclear disarmament negotiations.
"This would be the opposite of what the U.S. has tried to do or say they've tried to do, which is not make Pastor Saeed a pawn in these negotiations,'' Sekulow said.
"Many of us don't like that the United States is doing this, but we're sitting at the table, they've got one of our citizens, we know their treatment is horrendous.''
Nagmeh Abedini implored President Barack Obama to press harder for her husband's release.
"As a father, realize what the pain our family is going through for such a long time. But also . . . realize that this is a human-rights issue and a religious freedom issue," she said.
"Take this seriously . . . as a father and a husband.''
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