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Court hearing for imprisoned Christians in Iran

Tehran: May 18, 2017. Iranian Christians request prayer for two Christians, Victor Bet Tamraz and Amin Nader Afshar, who have been summoned to a court hearing on Sunday 21st May. They were arrested on 26th December 2014 at a Christmas celebration at Pastor Victor's home, together with a third Christian, Kavian, who has since left the country.

Pastor Victor was charged verbally with "conducting evangelism", "illegal house church activities" and "Bible printing and distribution" among other charges. He was released on bail on 1st March 2015. Amin Nader Afshar had been released on bail in February 2015.

On 26th August 2016 Amin Nader Afshar was arrested a second time at a picnic in Firuzkuh along with Ramiel Bet Tamraz (Pastor Victor's son), Mohammad Dehnavy, Amir Sina Dashti and Hadi Askari. Amin Nader Afshar and Hadi Askari remain detained in Evin Prison in Tehran. The others have been released on bail.

Those arrested in August have been charged with "acting against national security" and "organising and creating house churches". Ramiel Bet Tamraz faces additional charges of propagating the teaching of his father, Pastor Victor.

In April 2017 Pastor Victor and those arrested at the picnic were informed that they would soon be summoned for their hearing to receive a final verdict. Pastor Victor and Amin Nader Afshar have recently been informed that their hearing will be on 21st May at the 26th Revolutionary Court in Tehran. The judge will be Mr Ahmad Por - known for the severity of his rulings. It has not yet been confirmed if the other men have been summoned to the same hearing.

Source: Middle East Concern