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Idaho Cities, Towns Hold Vigil For Pastor Jailed In Iran

Iranian-American pastor Iran Saeed Abedini (file photo)

The small Idaho town of Meridian was one of several municipalities in the U.S. state that held a vigil to pray for the safe return of Christian pastor Saeed Abedini who is in an Iranian jail.

More than 100 people gathered in Meridian on September 26, to mark more than two years of Abedini's imprisonment after the pastor was convicted by an Iranian court of trying to establish a network of Christian churches in private homes.

The Iranian court sentenced Abedini to eight years in prison.

Abedini is an Iranian-American who converted from Islam to Christianity in 2000.

He opened some 100 Christian house churches in 30 Iranian cities in the early 2000s, but after the government of former Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad came to power much of Abedini's work was undone.

He made his ninth trip to Iran in July 2012 and was arrested shortly after that.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP and "The Idaho Press Tribune"