Christian Prisoner Ebrahim Firouzi Went on Hunger Strike; Detailed Report

Iranian Christian prisonerwent on a hunger strike to protest his placement among dangerous criminals. His protest was effective and his demands were partially met.

Mohabat News – Ebrahim Firouzi, who had gone on a hunger strike to protest being held in ward 10 of Rajaei-Shahr prison, ended his hunger strike, after prison authorities partially met his demands.

Reports on this matter indicate that Mr. Firouzi ended his strike on June 11, 2015, after negotiating with ward 10 authorities, who promised partial improvement in his situation.

Mr. Firouzi was being held among dangerous criminals in ward 10 of Rajaei-Shahr prison, which is against Iranian laws for separation of convicts. He started his strike on June 6, 2015 demanding to be transferred to ward 12, where political prisoners and prisoners of conscience are held.

An individual close to Mr. Firouzi told Mohabat News that he had been under a lot of mental pressure and guards had insulted his faith several times in ward 10, which led to his decision for going on a hunger strike.

Additionally, Mr. Firouzi received a new five year sentence from branch 28 of the Revolutionary Court last spring.

Even prior to his current imprisonment, Mr. Firouzi had been arrested numerous times for his Christian activities.

On 11 January 2011, he was arrested for the first time. He was thoroughly interrogated and held in jail for 154 days, after which he was conditionally released.

Later, on March 7, 2013, he was arrested at his work place by four plain-clothed security authorities and transferred to the notorious ward 209 of Evin prison where he was interrogated for 10 consecutive days and held there for a total of 53 days. This time he had to post a title deed as bail for his conditional release.

A little over four months later, on July 13, 2013, the Revolutionary Court of Robat-Karim county sentenced him to one year in prison following two years of exile for numerous charges, including propagating against the Islamic regime of Iran, organizing evangelistic activities, contact with foreigners and anti-Islamic revolutionary networks outside the country, and administering a Christian website.

While on a short leave from his one year prison term, Mr. Firouzi was arrested again in a meeting in his friend’s office on August 21, 2013. This time, security authorities accused him of spying for the Israeli Intelligence service, Mossad.

The latest update on Mr. Firouzi’s case is that he has been sentenced to an additional five years in prison. His lawyer claims that this sentence is the harshest possible punishment for Mr. Firouzi’s charges.

Persecution of religious minorities has increased in the last few years in Iran, especially for Christians. Currently, tens of Christians are imprisoned in Iran for their faith.