Monday, December 31, 2012

Fifty Christians Temporarily Arrested

12/30/2012 Iran (Mohabat News) – While many Christians around the world rejoice and celebrate Christmas in their churches, the Islamic Republic of Iran, with the advent of the birthday of Jesus Christ, begins its annual campaign of terror and fear through its security forces.

According to reports received by Mohabat News, on Thursday December 27th, while approximately 50 newly converted Christians had gathered at a residential home in the Northern district of Tehran to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and the occasion of Christmas, the government security forces began a coordinated and pre-planned raid that resulted in the immediate on the spot arrest and several hours of interrogation of all individuals present.

This incident resulted in the arrest and detention of Rev. Vruir Avanessian, an officially ordained pastor of Armenian descent, whose whereabouts and condition remains unknown at this time. Sources have reported that approximately 15 plain clothes police and security officers, in a well-orchestrated and coordinated plan, being fully aware and informed of this celebration by our Christian citizens entered the home of the host of this special gathering, claiming to be acting on a complaint by neighbors regarding the noise level, began to arrest all the guests. Once in the house, the security officers, who were fully aware of the nature of this gathering, ordered everyone to be quiet and cooperate with the officers and no one was allowed to leave the house.

- All Attendees Interrogated Using Previously Prepared Forms
Once the security forces realized how many people were assembled there and that it would not be feasible to transport everyone to a facility nearby, they began distributing specially prepared interrogation forms and required everyone to answer every question completely including their full name, home address, and other contact information. Also, they were asked to provide their email, Facebook, and other social media ID and passwords.

It has been reported that these forms contained questions regarding the manner in which they accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior, their connection to house-churches, their recent travels to other countries for the purpose of visiting and fellowshipping with other Christians, their core beliefs and why they had abandoned Islam, and their personal and political views about the Islamic Republic of Iran and the foreign policies of the regime.

It must be mentioned that the security forces were acting with some degree of respect and calm demeanor while insisting that everyone should be completely honest in answering all the questions on the form. Finally, some of the officers began to collect all cellphones and reminded everyone that once their investigation was complete they would be summoned to the security branch of the area to get their cellphones back and be dealt with individually(Source).

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