ICC Note: Nobody expected the 2012 arrest of Pastor Saeed Abedini to turn into a grueling 1,000 day detention. In nearly three years of suffering, the American citizen has endured many physical and psychological traumas. The unjust imprisonment followed his conviction of undermining the national security of Iran. Pastor Saeed was working to establish a government approved orphanage when he was arrested and charged for his work with Iranian Christians from 2000-2005. US Congress and President Obama have called for his release, but he remains in prison even as the United States and others are in the midst of the nuclear negotiations with Iran.
06-23-2015 Iran (Fox News): American Pastor Saeed Abedini has now spent 1,000 days in captivity in Iran – nearly three years suffering in prison – separated from his wife, Naghmeh, and their two young children.
No one could have imagined that he would be imprisoned this long when he was taken into custody by Iranian authorities in 2012 simply because of his Christian faith. Pastor Saeed was in Iran working on an orphanage when he was unexpectedly taken into custody by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard.
In January 2013, Pastor Saeed was convicted of undermining the national security of Iran for gathering with Christians in private homes from 2000 to 2005. He was sentenced to 8-years in prison.
Pastor Saeed has endured much in the past 1,000 days. He still suffers from physical injuries that require much-needed medical attention – injuries received from past beatings by prison guards. He also faces psychological torture and as recently as a couple of weeks ago – he received another round of beatings – this time at the hands of fellow inmates instead of prison guards.
“One thousand days without Saeed has really become a lifetime for us,” Pastor Saeed’s wife, Naghmeh, told me.
And while President Obama, Secretary of State Kerry and others have called on Iran to release Pastor Saeed, the fact remains that Pastor Saeed is still not free and remains in a dangerous prison where he faces new threats daily.
What’s even more troubling, now that the U.S. is in the final stages of negotiating face-to-face with the Iranians to reach a nuclear deal by June 30th, there is growing concern that Pastor Saeed and three other Americans held hostage in Iran will be left behind if a deal is reached.