(NOTE/UPDATE: Please notice the date of this post: it was written nearly two years before Mr. Trump began his run for the presidency of the United States. Regardless of what one might think of him, this story was obviously not motivated by political ambition, but by a genuine concern.)
There's some good news, and some very bad news, in the ongoing story of Saeed Abedini, the American pastor being held captive in Iran. First, the bad news: after having been moved from his earlier prison to the deadly Rajai Shahr facility, where the most violent murderers, rapists, and other criminals are simply left to die, Saeed is now in worse health than ever before, and has been repeatedly threatened and robbed at knifepoint by other inmates. According to the American Center for Law and Justice:
"Pastor Saeed is facing constant threats to his very life in the new prison. There have been several nights where he has awoken to men standing over him with knives,” the group said.
His “cell” is only separated by a curtain from the rest of the violent prisoner ward he is forced to share, ACLJ said, allowing dangerous prisoners, including murderers and rapists, unfettered access to him 24 hours a day.
“He has also been robbed at knifepoint several times, stripping him of what few necessities he has been permitted to purchase for personal hygiene,” the group said.
Tiffany Barrans, international legal director for the advocacy organization, said it is “increasingly difficult to hear about the deplorable conditions in which the Iranian regime continues to hold Pastor Saeed.”
“The human body can only endure so much,” she said.
Barrans said sanitation is limited, leaving Abedini prone to further infections. She added that threats of violence are a daily occurrence.
“He lives in filth where he has been denied proper medical attention and nutrition. Pastor Saeed has also suffered psychologically,” Barrans said.
All of this despite the recent deal between the Obama administration and Iran giving the Muslim regime more latitude in their uranium enrichment program, $8 billion in sanctions relief, and actually returning Iranian nuclear scientist Mojtaba Atarodi, who was arrested in California in 2011 for trying to help Iran's nuclear program by circumventing western sanctions. A Times of Israel report revealed that he was released in April as part of "back channel talks."
It is obvious that President Obama is more interested in assisting Iran's nuclear program than in protecting American citizens unjustly imprisoned abroad.
The good news, although it's cold comfort, is that a new voice has been raised on behalf of Saeed: that of Donald Trump. According to Christian Post:
businessman Donald Trump criticized President Barack Obama's failure to
negotiate with Iran for the release of imprisoned pastor Saeed Abedini.
The pastor's wife, Naghmeh, expressed her gratitude toward Trump.
"I am very happy to hear that he is doing this, because this is the first example of anyone outside of the legal and political areas speaking out. I hope that more people like him will speak out," Naghmeh Abedini told WND.com.
"I would very much like to meet him and thank him for what he has done in bringing awareness to this issue," she added. "Every voice counts and especially voices like Mr. Trump's. I'm just thankful he's using his voice to speak out against this injustice."
Trump has recently been tweeting about the controversial deal the U.S. struck with Iran, which provides over $7 billion in relief from international sanctions for the Islamic Republic in return for temporary freezing its nuclear program. The businessman denounced Obama for not making Abedini's release part of the deal.
"Mr. President, tell Iran to immediately free the Christian pastor, as a sign of good faith, & if they refuse break off talks - - - big sanctions," Trump posted on his official Twitter account on Wednesday.
"How does Obama rationalize giving Iran $8B in sanction relief when a Christian pastor is being tortured in an Iranian prison?" the billionaire asked in another post.
Donald Trump professes to be a Christian, but one need not be a believer in order to be outraged by Barack Obama's cold-blooded complicity in the literal martyrdom of Saeed Abedini. As America's President seeks to strengthen Saeed's barbaric captors, Christians worldwide will continue to hold our brother up in prayer.
Christian Post N.A.
World Net Daily