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Iran: convert awaits execution, refuses last chance to revert to Islam

September 29, 2011

An Iranian Protestant pastor, sentenced to death in 2010 for apostasy, refused to renounce his Christian faith and revert to Islam during a third and final court hearing this week on September 28.

A Washington Post blog reported that at one hearing

When asked to “repent” by the judges, Yousef [Nadarkhani] stated, “Repent means to return. What should I return to? To the blasphemy that I had before my faith in Christ?” The judges replied , “To the religion of your ancestors, Islam.” To which he replied, “I cannot.”

“I deplore reports that Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani, an Iranian church leader, could be executed imminently after refusing an order by the Supreme Court of Iran to recant his faith,” said British Foreign Secretary William Hague. “This demonstrates the Iranian regime’s continued unwillingness to abide by its constitutional and international obligations to respect religious freedom. I pay tribute to the courage shown by Pastor Nadarkhani who has no case to answer and call on the Iranian authorities to overturn his sentence.”

US House Speaker John Boehner also denounced the Iranian court proceedings.


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  • Posted by: imanxufan9901 - Sep. 29, 2011 10:42 PM ET USA

    And this is the so called peaceful religion. What a joke. Wake up and see what islam really is!

  • Posted by: wolfdavef3415 - Sep. 29, 2011 8:49 PM ET USA

    To call that a 'court proceeding' lends an aura of respectability and justice that is sadly devoid from the whole farcical episode. My prayers are with the Lord for this man.