Mohabat News – According to the received reports, Mitra Rahmati and Maryam Jalili were released from Evin prison on Wednesday September 17, 2013 at 1:00 AM, with no prior notice.
They were released at a time when they had already served most of their sentence.
Unofficial sources reported that their release has been conditional.
Both Christian ladies had been sentenced to two and a half years in prison for evangelism among Muslims and "being members of a Christian group". They appealed their sentences, but appeal court approved their sentences as well. Taking into account the number of days they spent under custody, their prison term should have been over in a month from the day of their release.
Maryam Jalili, Mitra Rahmati, Farah Vazehan, Zhila Makondi, Kefayat Malek-Mohammad and some others were the prisoners of conscience who were conditionally released from Evin prison.
Nasrin Sotoudeh, Lawyer and Human Rights activist, was among those released as well. Her husband announced on Wednesday, September 18 that she has been released from Evin prison.
Unexpected release of some political prisoners and prisoners of conscience has occurred right before President Rouhani's trip to New York to attend UN General Assembly, where he will meet with leaders of many countries, as well as UN Secretary Genral, Ban Ki Moon.
According to the reports published earlier, numerous Christian converts have been arrested since Persian new year in March, among whom there are some women as well.
Mitra Rahmati and Maryam Jalili had been initially arrested on December 24, 2009 in Pakdasht, a town south-east of Tehran. They had been arrested together with a number of other Christians in a house-church gathering, held to celebrate Christmas. Twelve of those arrested in that raid were released after two weeks, on January 4, 2010. After that, on March 17, Maryam Jalili, Mitra Rahmati, and Farzan Matin were also released temporarily. Jalili and Rahmati were arrested again later.
Earlier, Faezeh Hashemi, daughter of former Iranian president Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, told Bahar paper in an interview that she met two Christian woman prisoners in Evin, during the time of her arrest. Other Christian convert activists who were arrested included Mses. Somaye Bakhtiari, Ronak Samavat, and Nasim Zanjani, who had been arrested separately in first half of the Persian year 1392. The reason for their arrests was announced as holding Christian worship house-church meetings.
More recently, Maryam Naghash, another Christian activist, was summoned to Evin prison to serve her sentence. She was immediately arrested upon arrival at Evin prison. Ms. Naghash had been sentenced to four years in prison and started serving her sentence as of July 15 in women's ward of Evin prison.
It is years that Iranian Islamic judicial system treats Iranian Christians, especially Farsi-speaking Christians, cruelly for sharing their faith with others or holding house-church worship gatherings, accusing them of "threatening national security and spying for Israel".