Ebrahim Firouzi and Sevada Aghasar jailed for five years

Ebrahim Firouzi and Sevada Aghasar jailed for five years

Two Christians have been sentenced to five years each in prison for “acting against national security by gathering and collusion”.

Ebrahim Firouzi (left) and Sevada Aghasar were sentenced today at Branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court of Karaj, chaired by Judge Moghiseh.

Ebrahim is a Christian convert and prisoner of conscience, who has been arrested many times for his evangelism and has already spent a year in prison

On 22 July 2013, he was sentenced to a year in prison for “propaganda against the regime by establishing and organising Christian gatherings” and “having contacts with anti-revolutionary networks outside Iran”.

He was sentenced to one year in Rajaei Shahr Prison in Karaj and two years in exile in the far-southeastern city of Sarbaz, in Sistan and Baluchestan province.

However, on the completion of his jail sentence in January, prison authorities refused to release him until a new court order was issued.

He has appealed against this new jail sentence.

Sevada, an Armenian Christian living in Tehran, was arrested alongside Ebrahim on 21 August 2013, at the workplace of another friend, Masoud Mirza’i, who was also arrested but then released.

Sevada spent more than six months in Ward 350 of Evin Prison before his release on bail. He will now return to Evin Prison to begin his sentence. Ebrahim will remain in Rajaei Shahr Prison.

The UN’s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Iran, Ahmed Shaheed, noted in his latest report that as of January 2015 at least 92 Christians were either in detention or awaiting trial because of their Christian activities. According to his report, 69 Christians were arrested during 2014 and each detained for at least 24 hours.