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svgadminsvgOctober 4, 2011svgNews

Report: Iranian Extremists Pursue Christians Overseas

Iranians who fled their country after converting to Christianity have received death threats in their new homes overseas, according to the religious rights group Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW).

At least eleven Iranian Christians reported receiving emails in September calling on them to “repent and ask forgiveness from the presence of the Hidden Imam,” and warning that if they failed to do so, “according to the Fatwa given by Mehdi… they must be killed.”

The email was sent by a group calling itself “the unknown soldiers of the hidden Imam.”

Christian leaders in Iran told CSW that they are taking the threat seriously. There is reason to believe the threats sent to Iranians overseas may be coming from a group linked to Iran’s security forces, they said said.

More than 130 Christians have been arrested by Iranian forces in less than a year, they reported, and a pastor in the country has been sentenced to death for objecting to the teaching of Islam to Christians.

The reports from Iran follow in the heels of a report from Egypt that more than 100,000 Coptic Christians have either left the country or are seeking to do so. Christians in Egypt have faced increasingly frequent harassment since the overthrow of former president Hosni Mubarak and the subsequent rise of Salafi Islam in the area.

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