U.S. "aware" of jailed Iranian-American pastor in Iran
Saeed Abedini / Facebook
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates The U.S. State Department says it is in contact with the family of a man described by activists as an Iranian-American Christian pastor jailed in Tehran.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said Thursday in Washington that officials were "aware of the case," but could give no further details due to "privacy considerations."
Rights groups say the pastor, Saeed Abedini, has been held since late September after being arrested while visiting family.
Specific charges are unknown and Iranian officials have made no comment. Some activists believe Abedini, who became a U.S. citizen in 2010, was jailed for trying to convert Muslims a crime in Iran that could lead to capital punishment.
Saeed Abedini's wife, Naghmeh, appeared on Fox News Wednesday night, and said she believes the Revolutionary Guard in Iran has been stepping up pressure on Christians and Americans within their borders.
Nagmeh Abedini also alleged her husband had been abused while in jail, saying "a few weeks ago he told me (in a phone call) there's prisoners hurting him and there was a couple rounds of interrogators and the second round (was) hitting him."
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