Iranian Christians arrested at a picnic in August rejoice that Amir Sina Dashti has been able to submit bail for his conditional release, but request prayer that there will be no further delay in the judicial process and that their case will be brought to court soon.
On Friday 26th August Ramiel Bet Tamraz (pictured), Mohamad Dehnay, Amin Nader Afshar, Hadi Askary and Amir Sina Dashti went with their wives and friends to Firuzkuh north of Tehran to go fishing and have a picnic. Security officials from the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) raided the picnic and arrested the five men, detaining them in Evin Prison, Tehran.
No charges have been brought against the men despite weeks of interrogation. Ramiel is an ethnic Assyrian, but the other men are Iranian converts from Islam and it is believed that their arrest and detention is in relation to their Christian faith or because of their connection to Victor Bet Tamraz, pastor of Shahr-Ara Assyrian Pentecostal Church in Tehran and father of Ramiel.
On 10th October Ramiel and Mohamad were released after submitting bail equivalent to $33,000 each. Ramiel and Mohamad were told that Amin Nader Afshar had also been released, but it subsequently emerged that Amin was still detained, along with Hadi and Amir.
At the end of November Amir was able to obtain his release on submission of bail equivalent to $63,000, but Hadi and Amin have been unable to raise the amount of bail demanded for their conditional release and hope and pray for an early court hearing.
This is the second demand for bail Amin has had to face. He had previously been arrested at a Christmas celebration at the home of Pastor Victor on 26th December 2014 and after several weeks in detention was released after submitting bail equivalent to $40,000.
MAY BE CIRCULATED TO GENERAL MAILING LISTS AND OUTSIDE ORGANISATIONS, AND QUOTED FROM FREELY IN REPORTS CITING “MIDDLE EAST CONCERN” AS THE SOURCE OF THE INFORMATION
Iranian Christians are thankful that Amir was able to secure his conditional release, but request prayer that:
a. there will soon be a court hearing, and that the men will be acquitted and receive back monies submitted as bail
b. those still detained, Amin and Hadi, will know the presence, peace and provision of Jesus
c. all officials involved will love mercy, act justly, learn about Jesus and choose to follow Him