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Published On: Sun, Jun 2nd, 2013

Naghmeh Abedini, wife of jailed pastor Saeed Abedini, to speak before UN to call for urge Iran to release prisoners

The wife of American Pastor Saeed Abedini, who is in an Iranian prison because of his Christian faith, will speak at the U.N. Human Rights Council on Monday to seek member states’ action on behalf of her husband, who has been tortured and is suffering from internal bleeding.

Pastor Saeed AbediniSaeed’s wife, Naghmeh, and Jordan Sekulow, director of Policy and International Operations at the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which is raising the case before the panel, will deliver remarks to the Human Rights Council about why those persecuted for their faith need to be defended.

Mohabat News details the annoucement which will attempt to draw attention to the deadly Evin Prison in Tehran.

Sekulow raised Pastor Saeed’s case before the Council on Friday, with Naghmeh sitting beside him.

“As I told the Council, she represents the face of how Iran’s persecution of Christians truly has a worldwide impact,” Sekulow said on ACLJ’s website. “I implored the nations represented on the Human Rights Council to stand up for the most basic of human rights – the right to peaceably assemble in exercise of one’s religious beliefs – and urge Iran to release Pastor Saeed Abedini.”

Saeed’s peaceful assembly violated no promulgated law nor has Iran demonstrated how the peaceful assembly of its religious minorities threatens its security, Sekulow said in his prepared remarks at the Council.

Iran’s failure to apply the strict test of necessity and proportionality when reviewing whether to impose a restriction on an assembly, has resulted in a “severe violation of his (Saeed’s) basic right to peaceful assembly and religious freedom,” Sekulow said. “This violation must be addressed in order that the intersection between rights of religious expression and peaceful assembly may be reinforced as a cornerstone upon which peace may be established.”

In March, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called for Saeed’s “immediate” release, after which Naghmeh appeared hopeful. “I am very encouraged by Secretary Kerry’s statement demanding Saeed’s immediate release,” she said in a statement. But Kerry’s call has not been heeded by Iran.

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