Iran’s Supreme Court has upheld a death sentence of a Christian pastor for leaving Islam. He was reported to have been given a choice on Saturday, July 2, to repudiate his faith in Christ or be executed.
Yousef Nadarkhani, 33, had appealed to the Supreme Court after he was sentenced to death in 2010 on charges of “apostasy”, or abandoning Islam, by the Revolutionary Tribunal of Iran’s Gilan Province.
The advocacy group Middle East Concern, which has closely followed the case, said his lawyers have yet to receive written confirmation of the Supreme Court’s ruling, “but understand that the [death] sentence could be implemented at any time, unless he recants his Christian faith.”
Yousef, who has been in prison since October 2009, was a pastor in the evangelical ‘Church of Iran’ underground house church network in the northern city of Rasht.