The Iranian Christian prisoner Ebrahim Firouzi has begun a hunger strike in protest against recent long prison sentences given to Christians in Iran.
In recent weeks 11 Christians, including 2 church pastors, have been sentenced to lengthy prison terms of 10 years or more, ostensibly on charges of (or related to) acting against national security.
In response to this injustice the 30-year-old Christian convert and prisoner Ebrahim Firouzi has announced a 10-day hunger strike to protest against the mistreatment of new Christian believers and converts by the judicial authorities in Iran.
Prior to commencing the hunger strike Ebrahim issued the following statement:
“Following the mistreatment of new Christian believers and converts by the judicial authorities, refusing Christian prisoners access to Christian literature, and issuing unjust and hefty verdicts and sentences against new Christian believers and converts to the point that in the recent months tens of Christians have been sentenced to long years of imprisonment, I hereby announce going on hunger strike, commencing on 17th July 2017, for a period of 10 days, in support of the rights of fellow Christians.
“I have announced my concerns about these limitations on Christians to the judiciary of Tehran in a letter dated 16th July 2017: the regime of Iran does not determine or confirm the Christian faith of people and this matter is entirely within the jurisdiction of the Church.”
Ebrahim Firouzi was arrested in Tehran on 21st August 2013. He was due for release in January 2015 after serving a 10-month prison sentence for propaganda against the regime, insulting Islamic sacraments and acting against national security, but the Iranian authorities brought additional charges against him of “acting against national security, gathering, and collusion” and sentenced him to an additional 5 years’ imprisonment. Ebrahim is serving his sentence in Rajaei Shahr Prison in Karaj.
Christians given prison sentences in Iran since 20th June 2017:
Pastor Victor Bet Tamraz 10 years
Amin Afshar Naderi 15 years
Hadi Asgari 10 years
Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani 10 years
Mohammad Reza Omidi 10 years
Mohammad Ali Mosayebzadeh 10 years
Zaman Fadaie 10 years
Naser Navard Goltapeh 10 years
Bahram Nasibov 10 years
Yusif Farhadov 10 years
Eldar Gurbanov 10 years
Source: Middle East Concern