The wife of the former Assyrian Pentecostal Church leader in Iran has been sentenced to five years in prison, allegedly for endangering national security. But human rights advocates have said she is being punished for praying with other Christians. The Center for Human Rights in Iran reported on Monday that Judge Mashallah Ahmadzadeh of Branch 26 of the Revolutionary Court in Tehran handed down earlier in January a five-year sentence to Shamiram Isavi, the wife of Victor Bet Tamraz.

“As far as we know, and based on Mrs. Isavi’s own statements, no evidence has been presented in the case to show that she was engaged in spying or disturbing national security. She has denied all the charges,” Kiarash Alipour, a spokesman for Article 18, a U.K.-based organization focusing on Christians in Iran, told the group. READ MORE