02/10/2012, 00.00
IRAN

Ten Iranian Christians arrested at a prayer meeting

They were meeting at the home of those arrested. The authorities refuse to give the families information about their whereabouts. Police and security services hunt down converts, shut down churches were services are in Farsi.
Tehran (AsiaNews/Agencies) – More Christians are arrested in Iran. On Wednesday, plainclothes agents raided a house and arrested 10 people who had gathered for prayer service. All 10 detainees were transferred to an unknown location. The authorities refused to give the families any information in this regard.

Although precise details are still not available, Mohabat News reported that a man called Mojtaba Hosseini, 23, was among the people arrested. He had been arrested on 11 May 2008 with eight other people on charges of converting to Christianity. Security officials had asked him to renounce his faith and collaborate with the Intelligence office.

Mohabat News notes that the latest incident is part of a crackdown against Iran’s tiny Christian community. Converts are especially targeted.

The authorities have also forcibly closed churches where services are held in Persian (Farsi), Iran’s national language. In other churches, the Intelligence Ministry imposed the requirement of keeping out Farsi-speaking people

For this reason, Christian converts are forced to meet in small numbers in private homes. For the authorities, they are tools and spies for the West.
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