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Two Christian Women Held in Tehran Prison

Two Christian Women Held in Tehran Prison

ICC Note

“Fear is not in their vocabulary. They have so much boldness when they talk about Jesus Christ. They desperately need our prayers and help.”

By Lori Anold

08/31/2009 Iran (Christian Examiner)-Two Christian women remain jailed in Tehran , Iran , after refusing to renounce their faith during an Aug. 9 court hearing.

According to Elam Ministries, the women, Maryam Rustampoor, 27, and Marzieh Amirizadeh, 30, were arrested on apostasy-related charges on March 5 and have suffered poor health, solitary confinement and hours-long interrogations while blindfolded.

“The fire they have for God is unbelievable,” said Cristina Voskian, who heads the Pasadena office for Elam and has known the two women for nearly three years. “Fear is not in their vocabulary. They have so much boldness when they talk about Jesus Christ. They desperately need our prayers and help.”

Voskian, a Brazilian, said she was so taken with the fervor of those associated with Elam that she quit a career to work full time in the ministry.

Officials with Elam reported that the women were summoned to court to hear learn their fate.

When they arrived, however, a deputy prosecutor identified only as Mr. Haddad began questioning the women about their faith.

Haddad focused on their conversion from Islam to Christianity, asking if they regretted their decision to follow Christ. Both responded by saying they had no regrets.

The report by Elam said that Haddad went on to pressure the women.

“You should renounce your faith verbally and in written form.” They stood firm and replied, “We will not deny our faith.”

Failing to get a retraction, Haddad ordered the women back to prison and told them to contact him when they were ready to recant their Christian faith.

“We have already done our thinking,” the pair was quoted as saying.

After professing their love of Jesus, the women left the court, saying, “If we come out of prison, we want to do so with honor.”

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