Pastor Saeed Abedini Transferred to More Dangerous Prison in Iran

Thursday, 07 Nov 2013 04:25 PM

By Morgan Chilson

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American pastor Saeed Abedini, jailed in Iran for following his Christian faith, has been moved to a more dangerous prison, and it is believed his life is in danger, the American Center for Law and Justice learned.

Abedini has served one year of an eight-year term for “crimes against the security of Iran,” but family members learned he was moved from Evin Prison to Rajai Shahr Prison, a much more brutal prison, ACLJ said.

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Even at Evin Prison, the American was beaten and received serious injuries, but the Rajai Shahr facility is “the place they send you to disappear,” Jay Sekulow, of the American Center for Law and Justice, wrote for Fox News. wrote that two prisoners were executed there just last week, one a woman accused of killing a police officer she said was trying to rape her.

Abedini’s family was hopeful after President Obama asked Iran’s president to release him, but news that their family member was moved brought “despair.”

Abedini’s wife, Naghmeh, told Sekulow, “I am more concerned now about his safety than at any other time during his imprisonment. I can only imagine the torment and anguish he is experiencing. He is truly defenseless in this prison — defenseless from the abuse and violence of other prisoners — defenseless from a radical government that continues to violate his rights.”

A State Department spokesperson told The Blaze that they are aware of the situation. “We call again on Iranian authorities to permit a visit by officials of the Swiss Embassy in Tehran to determine the wellbeing of Mr. Abedini and of detained U.S.-Iranian citizen Amir Hekmati, who was sentenced on false espionage charges. We also repeat our call on Iran to release Mr. Abedini and Mr. Hekmati,” the spokesperson said.

Amir Hekmati is an ex-Marine who was arrested for allegedly spying for the United States. He is supposed to be getting a new trial because of problems with the original case, Al Jazeera reported, but no trial has been set.

A Senate bipartisan resolution was introduced recently calling on Iran to release Abedini and other prisoners who are held for religious beliefs, ACLJ said.

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