Sunday, August 19, 2007

Why we shouldn't deport Ali Panah

Man in Iran lashed for being Christian

Iranian authorities lashed a man 34 times after a copy of the Gospel was found in his car, according to an AKI report, filed Aug. 14.

The man, identified as “A. Sh.” on an Iranian website representing Christian converts, was found to be a Muslim convert to Christianity. He was arrested after police searched his car, which had been involved in an accident, and found the book printed in Farsi.

He was detained at police station Number 102 in Tehran for two days where he was lashed and suffered "other humiliations", the site said.

Meanwhile, I'm disturbed to see NZ First claiming that Panah's conversion isn't genuine and that he's simply faking Christianity in order to stay in NZ. He's certainly convinced his priest, and has apparently convinced the RSAA. The official problem isn't that he's not genuine, but that the New Zealand government believes that he can simply practice his religion in secret and so avoid persecution. This position is as morally untenable as telling a Jew fleeing Nazi Germany that they could simply hide.