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Ongoing wave of repressions and arrests of many new Iranian Christians

ICC Note:

More than sixty Iranian Christians and their families from Tehran and other cities in Iran were arrested during the Christmas holidays, reports Iranian Christian News Agency.

1/4/2011 Iran (Mohabat News) – With the arrival of Christmas and the Christian New Year, and pursuant to many recent arrests and detentions of Iranian Christians in Tehran and other cities by government security forces, the condition of many of the detained men and women remains unknown.

According to the reports received by the Iranian Christian News Agency, “Mohabat News”, several new Iranian Christians and their families from Tehran and other cities of Iran were arrested, in what seems to have been an extremely coordinated and pre-planned sting operations, and their home searched and personal properties seized by the agents of the Ministry of Information. As of this moment the whereabouts and the condition of most of these detained Christians remains unknown.

According to unofficial sources the number of arrested and/ or detained from this round of oppressive measures by the agents of the Ministry of Information and other plain-clothes officers has been more than 60 individuals.

Based on statements made by the families and relatives, most of the detainees were subjected to very harsh and long interrogations and questioning and were released from detention after signing a promissory note that they would not engage in Christian activities. Some of the detainees, having been identified as the leaders and teachers of Home-based churches, were not released and their current condition and whereabouts still remains unknown.

The unknown condition “Mehdi Foroutan”,

Based on reports received, early Sunday morning, on December 26, 2010, four plain-clothes officers of the Ministry of information enter the home of “Mehdi Foroutan” and not only searched and seized personal belongings such as computers, books, and CDs, but also arrested him and transported him to an undisclosed location.

According to Mohabat News, the family and relatives of Mr. Foroutan have contacted various security and governmental agencies and offices in hope of obtaining information as to the whereabouts of their loved one, but so far they have failed to secure any information from any sources. They even went to the notorious Evin prison and asked the official to confirm or deny the detention of Mr. Foroutan. No information was given to them and the whereabouts and the condition of this 33 years old man remains unknown at this time.

Recently, Mehdi Foroutan has been able to contact his family for very brief phone conversations and inform them of his relative well-being, but he has not been able to say anything about his overall condition at the holding center and his whereabouts.

It must be emphasized that Mr. Foroutan has been arrested and questioned by the authorities on 3 other occasions.

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