Feb. 22, 2013
/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which focuses on constitutional and human rights law, said today American Pastor
– a U.S. citizen facing a lengthy prison sentence in
because of his Christian faith – is speaking out in a
from prison where he says he's facing "horrific pressures," acknowledging continuing physical and psychological abuse – including troubling "death threats."
In his first letter since his
conviction and sentence
in January, the 32-year-old Pastor Saeed says the conditions inside Evin Prison are "so very difficult that my eyes get blurry, my body does not have the strength to walk, and my steps become very weak and shaky." Pastor Saeed also says he is facing significant pressure to recant his Christian faith.
"The torture, the beatings, the death threats never end," said
, Executive Director of the ACLJ, which represents Pastor Saeed's wife and children who reside in the U.S. "The Iranians continue to do everything they can to break Pastor Saeed – both physically and psychologically. The abuse he continues to face is nothing less than brutal. It's our hope that this latest communication only intensifies efforts in this country and abroad to pressure
to release this U.S. citizen."
In the letter, posted
, Pastor Saeed said he knows that "he's not been forgotten" but also provides astonishing details about the abuse he faces: "Various (bullying) groups, the psychological warfare, a year of not seeing my family, physical violence, actions committed to humiliate me, insults, being mocked, being confronted with extremists in the prison who create another prison within the prison walls, and the death threats…"
Pastor Saeed's wife, Naghmeh, expressed her concern: "It is heart wrenching to hear of Saeed's continued abuse and torture in the Iranian prison. We have known for some time that he is facing physical and psychological abuse. Now our worst fears have been confirmed. He continues to face life-threatening abuse at the hands of the Iranian officials simply because of his faith in Jesus."