FCNN reporter writes:
Mehdi Khazali, a publisher and blogger was arrested on Sunday 5th February, by ministry of intelligence operatives, as he exited his office today, and was taken to Evin infamous prison. He has already informed that will go into hunger strike. A doctor by profession and a veteran of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, Khazali is the son of Ayatollah Abolghassem Khazali, an important religious figure known for taking ultra-conservative positions.
While FCNN is dedicated to voice the suffering and the relentless persecution of Christians in Iran, particular those who are ‘New believers in Christ’,
Its important to take this opportunity to honour the extraordinary boldness and courage and extreme sacrifice of many Muslim leaders who have not stooped low to benefit from the plunder of national and natural wealth of the country at the expense of the poverty and suffering of the masses.
There are many who are now incarcerated in various prisons in Iran for taking upon themselves not to benefit from the table of hoarders and plunderers and not to be a part of the unjust and torturous regime.
Close to three years ago, on 14 July 2014 Agence France-Presse in Tehran released a report which was printed by ‘The Guardian’ in London:
“Iranian dissident Mehdi Khazali, who was serving a six-year prison sentence for acts against national security and spreading propaganda against the regime, has been freed on health grounds.
The official IRNA news agency quoted Khazali’s lawyer as saying that the 48-year-old was admitted to hospital after going on hunger strike, and that the authorities had decided he was too ill to return to jail.
“A representative of the prosecutor and a doctor went to my client’s bedside and have judged that the continuation of imprisonment would be dangerous for his health,” said lawyer Mostafa Tork-Hamedani.
“He is free,” he added. Khazali was arrested on 9 January 2013 for the third time in two years and released on bail in June the same year. But he was arrested again last month and sent to jail to serve his sentence.
Ayatollah Khazali has disowned the views of his son, including his criticism of Iran’s human rights record.
The younger Khazali regularly criticised former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a personal blog, but also on the BBC’s Persian service and Voice of America (VOA) radio, which are banned in Iran.
Khazali was also arrested in 2009 for taking part in a protest against the controversial re-election of Ahmadinejad.
Many reform-minded activists, journalists and human rights campaigners have been arrested in Iran in recent years.
Fifteen dissidents were pardoned last September, a month after President Hassan Rouhani took office on the back of an election win which had the support of moderates and reformers.
Rouhani had promised political reforms and a more moderate cultural policy, but the backbone of his victory was a pledge to improve the economy, which has been laid low by international sanctions imposed on the Islamic republic because of its disputed nuclear programme.”
Information appearing on Wikipedia numerates his frequent imprisonment:
“During the 2009 elections,Dr. Khazali adamantly criticized President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. After publishing a controversial article on his blog, in which he claimed that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had Jewish roots, he was forced to appear in religious court. Following Dr. Mehdi Khazali’s appearance in court, he was arrested on June 27, 2009 and taken to a secret location. During his detention, police raided his home and erased his website. Khazali was released on July 20, 2009 on $20,000 bail. On October 13, 2010, Dr. Mehdi Khazali was reportedly arrested again by Iranian security officials. State-run Fars News Agency reports that Dr. Khazali was arrested on charges of “propaganda against the system,” “publishing lies,” and “disturbing public opinion.” The Iranian government has made a habit of charging opposition members with such crimes, seemingly as a punishment for criticism of the regime. The Revolutionary Court’s Judge issued his release on a $180,000 bail. On July 18, 2011, Khazali was released He was arrested again on February 8, 2012 and sentenced to fourteen years in prison, tens years in exile, and ninety lashes. Shortly after his arrest, Dr. Khazali went on hunger strike. On Feb 14, 2012, after this days on hunger strike and losing 45 lbs, he was taken to Evin Prison‘s clinic for treatment.
On 30 October 2012 Mehdi Khazali was arrested with a group of people taking part in the Saraye Ghalam (Pen house) and was transported to Evin prison. He has since been on hunger strike. According to his website, he has been continuously threatened for his involvement in encouraging people to take part in the anti-government demonstrations of 3 November 2012 with the green movement. He has mentioned that his website has been hacked and personally predicted to be arrested soon because a day before the last time that he was arrested, his site had been hacked similarly.”
FCNN reporter citing the above articles in the Guardian and Wkipedia adds: ‘Since his release, in July 2014, Mr Mehdi Khazali has taken every opportunity to object to the human right abuses of the regime. He has earned international fame for writing open letters to Ayatulah Khameneyee, criticizing the injustice on many fronts. Released Christian prisoners, Farshid Fathi, Saeed Abedini and many others, speak with great respect for the stand of these courageous Iranians.
The editorial board of FCNN would like to encourage all Christians to pray for health and safety of Mr Khazali and numerous other prisoners of conscience and objectors of human right abuses. It’s not only Christians who suffer in Iran! Anyone who stands for Justice, human rights, freedom of faith and expression, integrity and honesty, is considered to be a threat to the rulers of the Islamic republic of Iran.