Iranian Christian convert granted early release from prison

Iranians carry pictures of Ayatollah Khomeini as they celebrate 40 years since the Revolution.Reuters

A Christian convert to Iran has been released from prison earlier than expected. 

Asghar Salehi was sentenced last September to six months in prison after being charged last year with propaganda against the Islamic Republic. 

He was arrested along with three others in the Fars Province.  They were sentenced under Article 500 of the penal code for "propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran through promoting Zionist Christianity", and imprisoned in Eghlid.

Their appeals against the sentence were defeated but in a surprise move, their request for early release was granted.

Salehi has now been freed after serving only two out of the six months, Middle East Concern reports, while the others were due for release on Saturday. 

An MEC spokesperson told BosNewsLife: "Iranian Christians are very pleased that Asghar Salehi has been given early release from Eghlid Prison.

"It is expected, fellow prisoners Mohammadreza Rezaei and A.T. will also be released soon."

Iran is ranked ninth in the Open Doors World Watch List of the top 50 countries where Christians suffer the worst persecution for their faith.