Iranian Christians granted early release from prison

Iranian Christians granted early release from prison

Asghar Salehi (left) and Mohammad Reza Rezaei (Middle East Concern)

Three Iranian Christian converts have been granted early release from prison, reports Middle East Concern.

Asghar Salehi was released from Eqlid Prison yesterday after serving two months of his six-month sentence.

Mohammad Reza Rezaei and a third convert known only as “A.T.” are due to be released on Saturday.

Article18’s Advocacy Director, Mansour Borji, notes that the men will only have been granted conditional release on the proviso that they don’t repeat their “offences”.

The three men were convicted in September 2019 of “propaganda against the system through promoting Zionist Christianity”.

They were taken to prison in December, having failed with their appeals.


The three Christians were first arrested, alongside four others, during raids on their homes in September 2018.

Following their arrests, Asghar was interrogated for three days, during which he was kept blindfolded for most of the time, then taken to Eqlid Prison for a further eight days. He was then released on bail after providing his business license as a guarantee.

The men were then brought before Branch 101 of Eqlid Criminal Court in April 2019 and charged under Article 500 of the penal code, which provides for up to a year’s imprisonment for anyone found guilty of “propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran or support of opposition groups and associations”.

Asghar was refused permission to speak during the hearing, warned that he was being monitored and told not to engage in any further Christian activities. He was also reported to be suffering from “potentially serious health issues”.