Pastor told to return to Islam – or die

Pastor told to return to Islam – or die

THERE have been numerous twists and turns in the case of Yousef Nadarkhani, a Christian pastor sentenced to death in Iran for apostasy … or blasphemy … or a breach of security. It’s not clear which.

According to the latest news report, Nadarkhanihas been given Islamic literature and ordered to read it.

Although Nadarkhani was charged with blasphemy after his 2009 arrest, Iranian officials in October denied that the charge was blasphemy and instead claimed the charge was of a security nature. They even said he had run a brothel.

Nadarkhani was arrested in 2009 after complaining that his son was being taught Islam in school. He eventually was sentenced to death. Earlier this year the Iranian Supreme Court upheld the death sentence but ordered a lower court to examine whether Nadarkhani was ever a Muslim – a fact essential to determine whether he left Islam for Christianity.

But that lower court in Rasht, Iran, found that although Nadarkhani was never a practicing Muslim:

He remains guilty of apostasy because he has Muslim ancestry.

In late September of this year, he was given four chances to recant his faith in court and refused each time. His case then was referred to Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

During one of the court exchanges, Nadarkhani said:

Repent means to return. What should I return to? To the blasphemy that I had before my faith in Christ?

The judge reportedly replied:

To the religion of your ancestors, Islam.

Mike Freer MP branded a ‘Jewish homosexual pig’

“I cannot,” Nadarkhani responded.

Meanwhile, closer to home, the BBC reports that British Conservative MP Mike Freer had first-hand experience of Islamic “tolerance” when he found himself trapped in a North Finchley mosque.

The Finchley and Golders Green MP, a member of the Conservative Friends of Israel, had gone to the mosque on Friday to hold a constituency surgery. He said he was forced to wait for police behind a locked door after he was threatened by a group of men, one of whom called him a:

Jewish homosexual pig.

The trouble began after messages on the Muslims Against Crusades website (which appears to have stopped functioning properly this morning) urged supporters to target him, he said.

Mr Freer said a message posted ahead of the incident on the site made reference to Labour MP Stephen Timms, who was stabbed while holding a surgery in east London last year.

It warned the attack on Mr Timms should serve as a “piercing reminder” to politicians that:

Their presence is no longer welcome in any Muslim area.

The message also stated that “as a member of the Conservative Party”, Mr Freer had:

The blood of thousands of Muslims on his hands.

Hat Tip: BarrieJohn (Freer report)


30 responses to “Pastor told to return to Islam – or die”

  1. barriejohn says:

    It would appear that reports of a retrial for Nadarkhani, being circulated by Peter Tatchell and others, may be wide of the mark:

    In any case, a retrial would, Blackadder-style, likely result in the same result: sort of “sentence first, verdict later”, as Lewis Carroll put it!

  2. Paul M says:

    The judge reportedly replied:

    To the religion of your ancestors, Islam.

    Hey, why don’t we push the boat right out and force him to convert to Zoroastrianism as I’m sure some of his ancestors were into that.

  3. john c says:

    The whole world needs to see the muslims against crusades website, its frightening vision might stimulate the apathetic appeasers to stand up and say no, not on our soil.

    Personaly, if i were in the pastors situation, i would have no qualms about lying, if he wants to be a “christian martyr” he is of course free to do so, its not right, but when in the lions den, wear a lion suit,and get out at the first oportunity.

    Muslims, more trouble than they are worth since the 7th century.
    although, as a counterpoint,
    Christians, more trouble than they are worth since year dot.

  4. gsw says:

    He remains guilty of apostasy because he has Muslim ancestry.

    So, is Obama hated by the umma because he too is guilty of apostasy, or is he a taqqya merchant, or are they just too afraid of loosing all that nice American aid to actually accuse him of anything?

  5. stargraves says:

    What the hell is their mental website counting down to?

  6. alb says:

    Slightly OT but from Muslims Against Crusades:

    “Allah (God) gave you the right to free gas and electricity over 1400 years ago, so who are we to change that?”

    So gas and electricity must be free in those countries already benefiting from Shariah?

  7. JohnMWhite says:

    Muslims had electricity in their houses 1400 years ago? As an archaeologist, I am stunned at this revelation, and cannot wait to see the evidence that will no doubt flow freely from those making such astonishing claims!

    I wonder if Muslims Against Crusades are all that interested in the blood of thousands of non-Muslims the Tories have on their hands. And why be partisan about it? All the major parties had members who voted for the war in Iraq, though it was mostly a Labour idea.

    I’m all for making crooked politicians uncomfortable. Not stabbing them, obviously, or threatening them with violence, but if they find themselves unwelcome anywhere after screwing over their constituents or voting for a bloody war on the basis of blatantly fabricated evidence, so be it. This guy was only elected in 2010, though. One can’t help but wonder that ‘blood on his hands’ is a smokescreeen for pure bigotry. A ‘friend of Israel’ who is openly gay gets attacked for his party killing Muslims, specifically with the alleged line “Jewish homosexual pig”? They couldn’t find anyone who actually voted for the war, eh, it just happened to be the gay guy who likes Israel that they found to bother?

  8. Graham Martin-Royle says:

    During one of the court exchanges, Nadarkhani said:
    Repent means to return. What should I return to? To the blasphemy that I had before my faith in Christ?
    The judge reportedly replied:
    To the religion of your ancestors, Islam.

    I’m certain that if they go back far enough into his ancestry, even the judge will be ordered to start worshipping a rock or something similar. Dickhead!

  9. Don says:


    Koranic science (as distinct from actual scientific work by muslims, which has been outstanding in the past) seems to be based on reverse-engineering. Take any field ( embryology, astronomy or genetics or whatever) and then simplify a well-known discovery. Find a verse which sort of might sound a bit like that and then claim it as a revelation pre-dating modern science.

    Only works backwards, though.

  10. barriejohn says:

    Worth a few minutes of your time, as are the links (make that a few hours!):

  11. tony e says:

    Whilst I applaud this man for sticking to his guns, there is nothing to be gained in being a martyr. He might think that by doing so he will be guaranteed a place in his heaven but he will be leaving a family behind that need him, especially in a vile place like Iran.

    If he has any common sense (which we know is in short supply from the religious) he will recant, apologize and get the f**k out of Iran, alive.

    But can he resist being a martyr?

  12. ZombieHunter says:

    I have some good friends from iran who now live in Glasgow and have totally rejected religion altogether, just as well they left Iran before rejecting islam.

    lets just hope iran is next in line for a massive revolution and the ayatollah and armoured dinnerjacket go the way of gadafi unless of course george galloway let’s them stay at his place.

  13. Daz says:

    …return to the religion of his ancestors…

    Ah right. Ancestor-worship and rock-painting it is then!

  14. AgentCormac says:

    I find stories like this so enlightening. The koran is wrong, but the bible is right? How can you tell the difference? How do you know which pack of lies and nonsense is more believable than the other? Bloody idiots. All of them.

  15. Jason Bawden says:

    Ok everyone back to worshiping the sun.

  16. Don says:

    Yes, Cormac, but the point is that if you choose to believe in a particuar pack of lies you don’t get hung for it.

  17. Don says:

    Oh, and all that about going back to worshipping sticks and stones and astronomical bodies and such, no.

    They weren’t true religions but rather pernicious pagan practices, which obviously don’t count. Clearly you can only have a true religion if you have a true god. So before god was revealed everyone else was a sinner and fair game. The first and original religion is whatever the man with the power to kill you says it is.

    That’s how it works.

  18. Russell W says:

    “Their presence is no longer welcome in any Muslim area.”

    “Muslim area?”

    Does anyone else find that phrase rather alarming? Even more so,I’d say, if you live in the UK


    Islam works backwards. The Soviets had the mythical inventor ‘Popov’.

  19. mikespeir says:

    Now, that, American Fundamentalists, is what persecution looks like.

  20. Newspaniard says:

    @ZombieHunter. Alas these “revolutions” appear to be run by and for the Muslim Brotherhood and are making places like Egypt even more hell-holes than they were before.

  21. Newspaniard says:

    P.S. Am I allowed to say “hell-holes”?

  22. Angela_K says:

    Russell W “Muslim area?”

    I agree, smacks of colonialism to me. Islam has it’s 5th columnists in most countries living in enclaves and trying to establish sharia law.

  23. Angela_K says:

    What has happened to the instant edit? I just noticed I’ve typed ‘it’s’ instead of ‘its’!

  24. remigius says:

    So whatever happens, whether he converts to the religion of his forefolks, or not, we still end up with one less Christian pastor.

    I’d call that a result.

  25. Broga says:

    @tony e: Once the faith grips then some of the faithful really do the martyr bit. You just have to read in Tudor times about martyrs being burned alive, racked etc rather than recant. Imagine, being burned alive rather than abandon a totally imaginary god. They did have some nice schemes: if a witch i.e. usually an innocent woman whose property the church wanted, sank in the village pond she was deemed innocent. If she floated she was guilty and headed for burning. The ultimate no win situation.

    Of course, once that sadistic and glutinous monster Henry V111 got to work large elements of the faithful were happy to recant and accept whatever was to their advantage.

  26. Funny thing the hubris of religionists. They think you can believe something by simply choosing to – a bit like changing your hat or deciding to try a different brand of coffee. I say hubris, because they must think that belief in their religion is the only possible cause, and anyone who doesn’t so believe is somehow faulty.

  27. AgentCormac says:

    @ Don

    Yes, Cormac, but the point is that if you choose to believe in a particuar pack of lies you don’t get hung for it.

    The point, as far as I can see it, is that all religions are based on falsehoods, so choosing one over another is an object lesson in pointless futility. That fact that one bunch of nutters will threaten to kill you for ‘swapping sides’ and the other lot won’t merely compounds the lunacy of it all.

  28. tony e says:


    You just know he is going to take the glassy eyed route to martyrdom.

    What’s the chance he will become the poster boy for the CLC?

  29. Trevor blake says:

    Did you see the tens of thousands of moderate Muslims conducting civil protests all over the world against this horror, saying ‘not in our name!’? No, I didn’t either. Only tens of thousands of average Muslims conducting violent protests all over the world against… cartoons in the newspaper.

    I have no respect for that set of priorities.