Iranian ‘home fellowship‘ Christians arrested
By Michael Ireland, Special Correspondent, ASSIST News Service, December 17, 2010
IRAN (ANS) -- Ten members of an Iranian home fellowship, who had gathered together to worship and study the Word of God, were arrested by security officers who entered the house, seizing every member of the church.
According to reports from Mohabat news www.mohabatnews.com, the Iranian Christian News Agency, on Sunday, November 14, security officers of the city of Varamin - Pakdasht, entered the meeting held in a home, arresting all the worshipers in that place.
As stated in the report, security officers entered the residence of Mr. Mohammadi and arrested every local Christian of the city who were actually at that time worshiping and studying the Bible as a group.
Based on this report, the number of people who were arrested included Mr. Mohammad Mohammadi, his wife and children, and some Christian friends who were also present in this gathering.
Mohabat News says that after entering the home, the security officers started searching every room. They confiscated and took away a few Bibles, Christian literature, and a personal computer belonging to Mr. Mohammadi.
According to Mohabat news, the security officers first took all the arrested who were Persian-speaking Christians to the intelligence office in Pakdasht, where they were "interrogated severely" for several hours. Next, they were transferred to the local justice ministry, where they spent the next few days with no decision being made on their status.
The news service says that two of these believers are being named as Mohammad Mohammadi, age 32, and Ali Keshavarz age 27, who were arrested and sent to Khorin prison.
Mr. Mohammadi's wife, together with her 7-year-old son, after the guarantee of her mother, was immediately set free, but the rest of the six people, after several days incarceration, were finally released.
The news service went on to say the fate of Mohammad Mohammadi and Ali Keshavarz, with no identified accusation being made against them, is still unknown and they are believed to still be held at Khorin. They are also prohibited to leave the country.
Furthermore, the news service states they are not allowed to contact their family by telephone.
Families of the arrested are warned of dire consequences should news of their arrest leak out, and they are being actively discouraged from contacting international news agencies.