Controversy Surrounds Claim that Iranian Pastor Nadarkhani Believed to be Dead
BAGHDAD, IRAQ (ANS) -- Earlier reports that Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani is dead are now being refuted by sources in Iran who have made contact with the persecuted pastor and who say he is 'alive and well.'Thank Gd. The death notice came from Islamic leaders, so it is in itself an implied threat.
UPDATE: Assist is reporting: Mystery Surrounds Claim that Iranian Pastor Nadarkhani Believed to be Dead
BAGHDAD, IRAQ (ANS) -- Mystery now surrounds earlier news that Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani is dead. Earlier today, an Anglican vicar in Iraq said that Iranian Pastor Youssef Nadarkhani was dead. The vicar said reports and pictures existed of Nadarkhani’s fate.
Writing on his Facebook page today (Thursday, March 7), Canon Andrew White, who serves St. George’s Church in Baghdad, said he was meeting with Muslim leaders today and came home to the news of Nadarkhani’s death.
At the time this story first went to press, the news had not been independently confirmed or verified.
While two independent ministries, both working in the region, had no working knowledge of the claim, Jason DeMars of www.Presenttruthm.com , told ANS late this evening, “Youcef is alive and he is doing fine.”
The original information about the status of Pastor Nadarkhani came from Canon White who wrote: “A truly wonderful day with my dear, dear friend the Grand Ayatollah Hossain Al Sader. With us were many of the other Islamic leaders. We spent 4 hours together had lunch and talked about the Almighty and His love that unites us.
If the Pastor is indeed alive, he and his family should be secreted out of the Islamic Republic of terror with the help of the US government.
Last summer, our organization AFDI and SIOA held a Human Rights vigil for Pastor Youcef, during which fifteen former Muslims came to share their harrowing stories of their escape from Islam and the sharia.
Of course the enemedia didn't deign to report on the unprecedented event -- because it might reflect badly on jihad and sharia. The Pastor's crime? Apostasy. He refused to renounce Christianity, and under Islam, leaving Islam is punishable by death. The evangelical pastor in Iran had been killed. He had been sentenced to death many months ago. He had been given four chances to return to Islam and he had refused. We organized this SRO conference to raise awareness of the Pastor's plight and the plight of non-Muslims living in Muslim countries.
All the schools of Islamic law, without exception, mandate death for those who leave Islam. We dedicated the Town Hall to Pastor Youcef because he was in imminent danger of being murdered for his beliefs, and we invited numerous apostates from Islam to speak about the death sentence they must live under every moment because they have dared to leave Islam. We called upon Muslims in the USA to stand up for Pastor Youcef and other victims of Islam’s apostasy law. Under the guise of ‘civil rights,’ subversive Hamas-groups like CAIR, ICNA, ISNA, MSA, MSU et al seek to undermine the unalienable rights guaranteed to every individual under the Constitution. Their ruse must be exposed, their Sharia agenda renounced.
What Islamic supremacist groups in the U.S. speak for Pastor Youcef?
And Pastor Youcef is believed dead. It appears his release from prison was a deliberate plan so that Islamic supremacists could act in accordance with the brutal sharia away from the eyes of the world.
It is Obama's silence and sanction that paves the way for these monstrous crimes. Despite the plaintive cries from vicitms the world over, President Obama has gone so far as to remove the sections covering religious freedom and religious peresecton from the Country Reports on Human Rights that the State department releases.
From left, Mohammed Asghar: Originally from Bangladesh, ex-Muslim author and an authority on the Qur'an. Nonie Darwish: Ex-Muslim and human rights activist raised in Gaza; director of Former Muslims United; author of Now They Call Me Infidel; Cruel and Usual Punishment; and The Devil We Don't Know. Amani Mustafa: Ex-Muslim from Egypt, TV producer and host of a Christian show, The Muslim Woman, appealing to Muslim women in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Arabian Peninsula. Her show reaches 300 million households globally with 50 million viewers per live program. Ibn Warraq: Pakistani ex-Muslim and renowned scholar; author of Why I Am Not A Muslim; The Quest for the Historical Muhammad; Leaving Islam; Why the West Is Best; and many other books. Ramin Parsha: Iranian NajatTV host who was born and raised as a devout Shiite Muslim is Shiraz, Iran. He is associate Pastor at Nejat Church with Pastor Reza Safa, who also was an Islamic supremacist in Iran and is now one of the most prominent ex-Muslim Christian pastors in America. Dr. Bushra Qader: Originally from Iraq, she is an activist for the rights of former Muslims. Walid Shoebat: Palestinian former jihad terrorist and member of the Muslim Brotherhood; now a Christian and a peace activist.
Iranian Pastor Nadarkhani Believed to be Dead By Michael Ireland Special Reporter, ASSIST News Service (hat tip Claude)
BAGHDAD, IRAQ (ANS) -- An Anglican vicar in Iraq has said that besieged Iranian Pastor Youssef Nadarkhani is dead.
Writing on his Facebook page today (Thursday, March 7), Canon Andrew White, who serves St. George's Church in Baghdad, said he was meeting with Muslim leaders today and came home to the news of Nadarkhani's death.
As of the time this story went to press, the news has not been independently confirmed or verified.
Canon White wrote: "A truly wonderful day with my dear, dear friend the Grand Ayatollah Hossain Al Sader. With us were many of the other Islamic leaders. We spent 4 hours together had lunch and talked about the Almighty and His love that unites us," he writes."Then we returned to the terrible news that Pastor Yusif, the evangelical pastor in Iran had been killed. He had been sentenced to death many months ago. He had been given four chances to return to Islam and he had refused. He waved goodbye and went to Heaven. People will say look at how evil Islam is. It is not, and the start of today shows we love each other."
In answer to several questions from his followers on Facebook, Canon White said: "We have all the reports, but they are in Arabic and Farsi. We even have the pictures."
On Saturday, September 8, 2012, ASSIST News reported that after more than 1,000 days in jail, Youcef Nadarkhani -- the sorely persecuted pastor who repeatedly refused to renounce his LORD -- emerged a free man, unbroken.
The court acquitted Nadarkhani of apostasy, the charge for which he had been sentenced to death.
According to Mohammad-Ali Dadkhah, Nadarkhani's lawyer, the court 'finally accepted our argument' that Iran's penal code did not 'criminalize apostasy' (Financial Times, Sept.9). However, the court did find Nadarkhani guilty of 'evangelizing Muslims'.
For this 'crime' he was sentenced to three years imprisonment but granted time served and released.
Elizabeth Kendall, author of the Religious Liberty Prayer Bulletin (RLPB) 176, wrote in September last year that, "While we rejoice that Pastor Youcef (was released), enjoying the fellowship of believers and the joyful, tender warmth of his wife and sons, we must remember that Nadarkhani's life might be more at risk now than ever."
Iran's penal code might not criminalize apostasy, but Islamic Sharia law does, Kendall stated.
Kendall added: "Furthermore, as this prayer ministry previously cautioned in RLPB 173, 'by launching a new trial with unprovable accusations [extortion and banditry], the regime may be seeking to "wash its hands" publicly of Nadarkhani and release him to the Islamists and secret police while declaring itself "innocent of this man's blood" (after the manner of Pontius Pilate in Matthew 27:24), as has happened before in Iran.'
Kendall said that furthermore, a second conviction of 'evangelizing Muslims' would doubtless be punished more severely than the first. "We must also remember that numerous Iranian Christians remain in prison, including Pastor Behnam Irani (41; married, with two children) who is gravely ill," she said.
Representatives of two ministries working in the region said they had no news on Nadarkhani's situation.
ASSIST News is actively trying to verify with other sources inside Iran whether or not Youssef is still alive or has been killed.
ASSIST News will continue to publish further details as they are obtained.