Iran: Pastor Irani Beaten in Prison and Taken to Unknown Location

Thursday, June 12, 2014

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

TEHRAN, IRAN (Worthy News)-- Christian Solidarity Worldwide has learned that imprisoned Pastor Behnam Irani -- who was sentenced in 2011 to six years on political charges -- was beaten and transferred to an unknown location Saturday.

The beating of Irani was only the latest assault by agents of the Iran's Islamic Republic against prisoners of conscience.

During the first few months of his imprisonment in Ghezal Hesar, Irani was held in a small cell where he was deliberately kept from sleeping; he was later transferred to another cell with 40 violent criminals where he has suffered beatings from both cell mates and prison authorities alike.

"We are deeply concerned to hear of the assault on Pastor Irani and his enforced disappearance," said Mervyn Thomas, CSW Chief Executive. "CSW urges the authorities to make Pastor Irani's whereabouts known and to provide him with any medical treatment he may need following his beating at the hands of VEVAK security agents. Furthermore, we continue to call for his release, since in reality he is in prison on account of his faith and in contravention of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Iran is party.

"We also urge the Iranian authorities to end assaults on prisoners, as they violate the nation's obligations under article 10 of the ICCPR, which states that prisoners should be treated with humanity and with respect for their inherent human dignity."