The government of Iran appears to be doubling down in the case of a pastor facing the death sentence for leaving the Islamic faith by now arresting his attorney.
The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which has been working to secure the release of Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, today called Iran’s decision to imprison Pastor Youcef’s attorney, Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, “very troubling.”
Dadkah told news organizations that government officials had informed him he had been convicted of acting against national security and spreading propaganda against the regime and could expect to be jailed soon.
“The news that this renowned human rights attorney has been sentenced to prison by Iranian officials is very troubling,” said Jordan Sekulow, Executive Director of the ACLJ. “This development only reinforces the fact that Iran has no regard for basic human rights. It also raises further concern about the fate of Pastor Youcef. With his attorney facing nine years in prison, and no other lawyer likely to take the case, Pastor Youcef has no legal advocate, which places him at greater risk.”
The decision by Iran to arrest Nadarkhani’s attorney comes amidst intense international pressure to free the pastor. Their actions towards Nadarkhani mirror those it shows towards the rest of the world in regards to its nuclear program.
Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani caught the attention of the world after being convicted for leaving the Islamic faith, even though he says he has never been a Muslim. Nardarkhani, who is facing a possible death sentence, has been caught in a catch 22 regarding Muslim teaching.
While Nadarkhani tells the world that he was never a Muslim that statement is contrary to Muslim teaching. According to Islam, everyone is born a Muslim. Thus, Nadarkhani or for that matter, any person who becomes a Christian or follows any other religion has “left Islam.”
On page 28, in the introduction of a copy of the Qur’an, printed by Ansariyan Publications in the Islamic Republic of Iran, the translator, M.H. Shakir in the section “Islam and Muslims” states, “In fact, every child that is born is a Muslim. It is the parents who make him a Jew, Christian or Hindu.”
Based on this teaching, even if Nadarkhani had never visited a mosque a day in his life he is still considered a Muslim. Therefore, when he accepted Christ as his savior and became a Christian he left the Muslim faith whether he knew it or not.
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