The head of the Iranian Judicial Authority Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei said on Sunday that he had ordered « judicial units and prosecutors in the country« To grant »ten days of freedom for Christian prisoners»Convicted of minor offenses, so that they can spend the holidays with their families.
The reason for this decision is to « celebrate the new year 2022 and the anniversary of the birth of Jesus Christ« , He declared according to remarks reported by Mizan, the news agency of Iranian justice. He did not indicate the number of prisoners concerned or the date of their release.
Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejeï clarified that prisoners sentenced for breach of security, organized crime, kidnapping, armed robbery and those condemned to death will not be concerned.
The Christians of Iran, mostly Armenians who celebrate Christmas on January 6 on the occasion of Epiphany, represent only 1% of the population of this country of 83 million inhabitants, mostly Shia Muslims.
The Iranian Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, grants several collective pardons or remissions of sentence each year on the occasion of the biggest Muslim or national religious holidays on the proposal of the head of the Judicial Authority. But these announcements rarely concern members of the Christian minority.
This year Iranian President Ebrahim Raïssi visited the family home of an Armenian Christian who died in Tehran in “martyrOn Christmas Day during the war between Iran and Iraq from 1980 to 1988, the official IRNA news agency reported.
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