Iran: Mother loses son for his conversion to Christianity | Persecution

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Iran: Mother loses son for his conversion to Christianity

Mahnaz is the mother of a Christian convert. She said in an interview with Mohabat News that due to pressures from ultra-religious, she has lost her son who was tortured by the security agents during an arrest.

ICC Note:

Mohabat News interviews Mahnaz about her son who was arrested and tortured for his conversion to Christianity.

9/26/2011 Iran (Mohabat News) – Iranian Christian News Agency, “Mohabat News”; one of the concerns regarding the human rights violation in Iran, which has always been a matter of attention in the human rights circles, is the problems that religious minorities are facing in the country. And problems that the converts from Islam to other religions face after they deny their Islamic faith is on top of that list.

According to the doctrine of Shiite Islam, these converts are punishable by death. Despite the fact that death sentences based on the apostasy charges have not been enforced yet, this Islamic doctrinal view makes it possible for those who want to act beyond the boundaries of the constitutional law and persecute those who have converted from their Islamic faith.

In these situations, the converts don’t feel safe at all and face the threat of being arrested everyday. Most of the time they decide to leave the country and apply for the asylum status in a neighboring country on the basis of the lack of freedom religious belief.

Mahnaz is one of these converts to Christianity who is waiting in Turkey for her refugee status in another host country. She was active in her faith and evangelistic activities. Below is the Mohabat News’ interview with this mother, a Christian Asylum seeker in Turkey:

Could you please introduce yourself and tell us why you left Iran?

I’m Mahnaz and it’s now 5 years that I’ve accepted Jesus in my heart. The reason I left Iran is because I chose to become a Christian.

Why did you choose Christianity?

The reason is the discriminations in the Sharia laws toward women. Islamic law created a lot of problems for me in my marriage. As a woman I also didn’t have the right to have the custody of my child and I had to give the child to my husband after the divorce. That was why when I heard about Christianity, I decided to change my faith and this of course caused me much trouble.

You pointed to the problems, can you please explain in details?

After my introduction to Christianity, I tried to share my faith with the others. That was when I along with some friends and relatives started certain Christian activities. We used to invite people to the church and give away some Christian books and movies. After a while, we decided to continue our activities in a home church and this decision led to some security threats from the Iranian Government. Eventually my son, “Peyman”, who was 22 at the time, was killed during the arrest process by the security forces and the police force, but the officials announced heart attack as the cause of his death.

How bad was the pressure and how did they found out that you are active in Christianity?

The fact is that we had to keep everything secret, watching out the newcomers and people around us was taking away a lot of energy from us, especially trying not to be recognized and identified, and this was placing a lot of pressure on us all. This made us vulnerable and the security forced took advantage of that to arrest my Nephews and my son, Peyman during the arrest by the officers was beaten died before they could transfer him to the jail. Add to all these was the mental pressures after the death of my beloved son.

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