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Iran: Nadarkhani Update

Iran’s Ayatollah Sadegh Larijani, head of the judiciary, has ordered the judge presiding over Youcef Nadarkhani’s case to delay his written verdict for one year. The judge was specifically ordered to keep Nadarkhani in prison, using whatever means necessary to force him to recant his Christian faith and convert to Islam.

According to Present Truth Ministries, the order was designed to cause the international community, specifically Christians, to forget about Nadarkhani’s case.

“Once we forget about him, then they are free to execute him,” said a spokesperson from Present Truth Ministries. “Please help us ensure that [Nadarkhani] is not forgotten.”

Nadarkhani has been in prison since October 2009 after being charged with apostasy. He received a death sentence in 2010, a verdict upheld by the Iranian Supreme Court in July 2011.

In 2011, the original tribunal was asked to re-examine whether Nadarkhani had practiced Islam as an adult before becoming a Christian at age 19, according to Present Truth Ministries. Although the judge acknowledged that Nadarkhani had not practiced Islam, the death sentence was upheld. The court ruled that because he came from a Muslim family, he was guilty of apostasy, according to reports from Middle East Concern.

You can take action on Nadarkhani’s behalf by talking to your congressmen, telling your friends about the case or e-mailing the Iranian Embassy. Post his prisoner alert profile in your church or Sunday school class, or write a letter to Nadarkhani while he is in prison. Please be respectful, saying nothing negative about the Iranian government. Pray that Nadarkhani’s conviction will be overturned and that his family will continue to trust God during this time.

Sources: Present Truth Ministries, Middle East Concern, www.prisoneralert.com

Posted: December 19, 2011

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