Youcef Nadarkhani, the Iranian Christian pastor who had been re-arrested on Christmas Day after serving nearly three years in prison for renouncing Islam, was released today, according to individuals close to the pastor and his family.
Nadarkhani, 35, had been held since Christmas Day at Lakan Prison in Rasht, the facility where he was imprisoned from 2010 to 2012 in a case that made international headlines. Although he initially faced possible execution, he had been freed in November, with just 45 days left on a downgraded sentence issued after Fox News and other media outlets drew attention to his plight. But when he was arrested, an Iranian judge said he must finish his sentence.
When Nadarkhani, an active member in Iran's Evangelical community, was acquitted of apostasy in September and subsequently freed, it was seen as a major victory for the grassroots campaign that had embraced his cause. But the arrest on Christmas Day was a bitter blow for the married father of two young children and his supporters.
Read more at www.foxnews.com.