According to The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), sources inside Iran have reported that the Chief Justice of the Gilan Provincial Court in Iran is once again pressuring Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani to recant his devout faith in Christ or suffer possible execution for not converting to Islam.
The Chief Justice, in a private meeting held last week, ordered that additional pressure be put on Pastor Youcef to recant his Christian faith. however, Pastor Youcef once again bravely responded by refusing to deny his faith in Christ. Thus, reiterating to the Iranian authorities that he could not return to Islam because he was never a Muslim.
As ACLJ reportedearlier this month, Iran has aggressively renewed its attempts to increase pressure and foreully coerce Pastor Youcef to renounce his faith in Christ under threat of death from the state.
“Despite the threat of death, Pastor Youcef remains committed to his Christian faith and maintains that he was never a Muslim. In June 2011, the Iranian Supreme Court upheld Pastor Youcef’s execution sentence for apostasy, but remanded the case to the trial court for a determination if he was ever a Muslim as an adult,” reported the ACLJ.
However, despite substantial evidence, the trial court, the 11th branch of Iran’s Gilan Provincial Court, determined that Pastor Youcef was a Muslim because he was born into a Muslim family.
At that hearing, when the Iranian judges demanded that he “repent,” Youcef responded, “Repent means to return. What should I return to? To the blasphemy that I had before my faith in Christ?” The judges replied, “To the religion of your ancestors, Islam.” To which he replied, “I cannot.”
The ACLJ further added, “This court has ignored Iranian law (which requires a written ruling within a week of a hearing) and its own promise to issue a final determination of Pastor Youcef’s fate by mid-December 2011. Instead, the Iranian court continues its attempt to essentially make this case go away by refusing to issue a decision while it actively pressures Pastor Youcef to recant.”
With worldwide support growing daily, he ACLJ is actively engaged in the effort to save his live and secure his release. Discover how you can lend your voice to help Pastor Youcef by visiting here.
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