Iranian authorities began to systematically seize and destroy Bibles after a Shiite cleric issued an urgent warning about the spread of Christianity.
Authorities in northwestern Iran seized 6,500 Bibles, according to the Iranian Christian news organization Mohabat News, which quotes an official as saying of the seizure that “all religions are strengthening their power to confront Islam; otherwise, what does this huge number of Bibles mean?” The agency has reported several other recent incidents of Bibles and other Christian literature being seized and sometimes publicly burned.
Mohabat reports that the government-connected cleric, Ayatollah Hadi Jahangosha, warned of “the spread of Christianity among our youth,” pointing to burgeoning satellite programming, literature, and religious articles promoting the Western tradition.
“Everyone in society should feel responsibility in this matter and play his or her role in spreading of pure Islam and fight false and distorted cultures,” the news agency quotes him as saying.
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