Women plan prayer vigil outside Iranian embassy for release of Christian converts

Maryam and Marzieh (picture: CSW)

Maryam and Marzieh (picture: CSW)

Women dressed in white will be gathering outside the Iranian embassy in London this Saturday as part of a prayer vigil to highlight the plight of two female Christian converts from Islam who have been held at Evin Prison in Teheran without charge for the last six months.
 
The vigil is being organized by Iranian Christian women, and is supported by Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW.)
 
Maryam Rostampour, 27, and Marzieh Amirizadeh, 30, were arrested by Iranian security officers on 5 March, after their apartment had been searched and their Bibles and other items were confiscated. Neither woman has committed a crime under Iranian or international law. At a hearing at Tehran’s Revolutionary Court on Sunday, 9 August, both women refused to recant their faith after being ordered to do so. They were subsequently returned to their cells, where their health is now rapidly deteriorating due to the overcrowded conditions and limited facilities.
 
In Iran, apostates (Muslims who convert to another religion) often face arbitrary arrest, indefinite detention and a host of other human rights abuses.
 
Mervyn Thomas, Chief Executive of CSW said: “We wholeheartedly stand in solidarity with Maryam and Marzieh, who are being held solely on the basis of exercising their most basic right: freedom of thought, conscience and belief. Scores of illegal detentions of Christian converts in Iran have been reported this year, and we strongly urge the Iranian Government to release these innocent women immediately”. The vigil will take place from  12:30 – 9pm.  For further information see: www.csw.org.uk.

Source: CSW