On 22 September MEC requested prayer for Ayoub Poor-Rezazade who had gone missing while in custody. His family still has no news of him.
Ayoub was arrested with Morteza Mashhoudkari and Ahmad Sarparast in Rasht on 5 September. After interrogation in security offices, Ahmad and Morteza were transferred to Lakan Prison on 18 September and released on 21 September on bail of 400 million tomans (about $15000). They had not seen Ayoub since their arrest. Ayoub was last able to contact his family in a short telephone call on 8 September.
Prayer is also requested for an unexpected appeal hearing for three converts from Karaj.
On 11 November 2020, Iranian intelligence agents in Karaj raided the homes of Milad Gourdazi, Amin Khaki and Alireza Nourmohammadi. They were not arrested at the time, but later faced charges under Article 500 of the penal code for “propaganda that educates in a deviant way contrary to the holy religion of Islam” and were each sentenced to five years in prison and fined 40 million tomans (about $1500).
Following an appeal hearing on 25 August, the convictions were upheld, but the prison sentences reduced to three years and the fines cancelled. Milad received a summons to prison for 21 September. However, in a surprise development, the three men have been informed they will have an additional hearing on 16 December. Thankfully they do not yet have to go to prison.
Iranian Christians are thankful the three Christians from Karaj are not in prison and have a further chance to be acquitted, but request prayer that:
- Ayoub’s family will receive news about him soon and that God will strengthen and keep him wherever he is
- Amin, Alireza and Milad will be acquitted in the hearing scheduled for 16 December
- The Iranian authorities will stop criminalising the peaceful expression of faith