In an open letter, Christian Amin Nader Afshar, sentenced to 15 years in prison for "blasphemy" on July 4th, announced his decision to start a hunger strike in order to question the government about their decision, and to "end his life gradually".
Lhen of the same trial, 3 other Christians, Kaviyan Fallah-Mohammadi, Hadi Askary and Victor Bet-Tamraz, were also sentenced to 10 years in prison for having acted "against national security", hosting house churches and spreading Christian faith in Iran. It is forbidden to renounce Islam in this country. Bet-Tamraz and Fallah-Mohammadi were able to regain bail. Unfortunately, this is not the case for Hadi Askary and Amin Nader Afshar, arrested in August 2016 during a picnic with family in Tehran.
In his letter, Amin Nader Afshar wonders what the authorities blame him for, who seem to "have such hatred". He regrets that his report "was riddled with lies claiming that he insulted the religious beliefs" of his country. He also mentions the failure to keep court promises made publicly and in front of his family. The new convert deplores the mistreatment and insults he has suffered continuously in prison by inmates and guards for a year.
However, Amin Nader Afshar insists that he continues to “love his enemies and pray for those who hate him,” and that he has never insulted anyone, as he is taught in the Bible.
Having started a hunger strike, he refuses any medical assistance and "hopes that the authorities will feel a little better on seeing him die slowly".
source: World Watch Monitor
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