Pastor and wife flee for lives after 15-year sentence for celebrating Christmas

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(ACLJ) — A Christian pastor and his wife are running for their lives after being arrested and SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS, among other Christian traditions.

Iranian-Assyrian Christian Pastor Victor Bet-Tamraz, 66, was sentenced to 10 years in prison, and his wife Shamiram Issavi, 65, was sentenced to 5 years (image source: Article18.) Bet-Tamraz and other Christians were arrested on Dec. 26, 2014. What was the heinous crime that earned them a stay in Iran’s infamous Evin Prison – the Iranian penitentiary labeled “a torture factory”? Holding a gathering to celebrate the Christmas holiday.

The arresting officers reportedly told them they were being arrested for participating in an “unlawful and unauthorized gathering”:

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