Sen. Ted Cruz on Pastor Saeed Abedini’s Transfer to Prison in Karaj, Iran

by 1389 on November 6, 2013

in 1389 (blog admin), Iran, Protestant Christianity, Shari'a

Pastor Saeed Abedini and his family
Pastor Saeed Abedini and his family

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC — U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today released the following statement:

 
“Yesterday we learned that Pastor Saeed Abedini, an American citizen, was transferred abruptly and without explanation from Iran’s Evin prison in Tehran to the even more brutal Rajai Shahr prison in Karaj. Pastor Saeed’s cruel imprisonment for peacefully practicing his Christian faith has gone on for more than a year. During this time it has been inspirational to see the courage and faith professed by his wife Naghmeh, and to hear her account of how, even under such duress, Pastor Saeed has continued his ministry and converted as many as thirty of his fellow prisoners at Evin.

“Pastor Saeed’s situation has, however, now reached a crisis point. The prison at Karaj houses violent criminals on death row, and is infamous for the abuse of political prisoners. One international observer reported in 2005 that “Going to Karaj is a severe punishment. Once in there one stops to be a human being.” Conditions have not improved since then. Our first priority has to be to get Pastor Saeed out of these terrible circumstances. The International Red Cross should be granted access to him, and he should be promptly liberated.

“But once the immediate danger to Pastor Saeed is relieved, the larger issue is that such human rights outrages have no place in the civilized exchange between nations. Many Americans have been hopeful in recent months that the new president of Iran, Hasan Rouhani, would be a more moderate partner and work with the United States to peacefully resolve the international crisis over Iran’s nuclear program. Indeed, historic bi-lateral negotiations are slated to resume in Geneva later this week based on the perception that there has been a material improvement in Iran’s historically hostile posture towards the United States and our allies.

“Unfortunately, this harsh persecution of an American – made, not coincidentally, on the 34th anniversary of the illegal seizure of American hostages in Iran – could hardly be more clearly designed to send the opposite message. It is difficult to see how the Obama administration can engage in good-faith talks with the Islamic Republic of Iran under these circumstances.

“President Obama should be commended for raising the issue of Pastor Saeed’s release in his telephone call with President Rouhani on September 27th. Given this recent action, I hope President Obama now takes that request one step further and demands his release as a precondition to any further negotiations. The Iranians should not be allowed to try to leverage Pastor Saeed’s release into American concessions over sanctions. Rather, the President should make it clear that it is incumbent on the Iranians to demonstrate through this action that the rhetoric of their new president is more than mere lip service to gain economic relief. I am sure all my colleagues who value religious freedom would be proud to stand with the President in this effort.

“It is time for Iran to stop the chants of ‘Death to America’ and start freeing the many prisoners of conscience suffering in unjust captivity in that country, starting with Saeed Abedini.”

press@cruz.senate.gov / (202) 228-7561

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 faisalbhatti May 30, 2014 at 11:44 pm

please contact with me pastor I need you can contact with me thought Skype or facebook or email please faisalbhattii76@Yahoo.com that is my emial

2 1389 May 31, 2014 at 12:04 am

Pastor Saeed Abedini is in prison and cannot contact anyone. 1389 Blog has no contact information for him.

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