The latest from Iran indicates that there has been no “retrial” ordered for Pastor Yousef. Instead, the case is still in the hands of Ayatollah Khamenei, who is expected by the pastor’s lawyer to rule in about a week. According to CNN:
As for the current status of the case, [lawyer Mohammad ] Dadkah said a court in Rasht has asked for Ali Khamenei, Iran’s supreme leader, to rule on whether Nadarkhani should be put to death.
“I expect an opinion for Khamenei in about a week or so when he returns to work,” Dadkah said. According to Dadkah, Khamenei is traveling.
Dadkah also said he doesn’t think that international pressure has had anything to do with the way the case has been treated:
International pressure mounting in the apostasy trial of a Christian pastor in Iran has “not had any impact on the Iranian court,” the attorney for Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani told CNN on Friday.
“They (the court) work on the evidence and Iranian law,” said lawyer Mohammad Dadkah. “I don’t think the statements from the United States has had any impact either on this case as this is all going through the Iranian justice system, which is based on the law and evidence.”
That seems odd in light of the fact that a provincial court kicked a capital case all the way up to the Supreme Leader, as well as in the sudden change of charges from the one on which he was convicted (apostasy) to obviously trumped-up charges of rape, treason, and running a house of prostitution (!). However, it has to be remembered that Dadkah is an Iranian lawyer, who has to do a delicate balancing act between representing his client while avoiding provoking the wrath of the government, a government that would never admit that international criticism or pleas have anything to do with its actions.
I’ve got to say that it can’t hurt to keep the pressure up, and by all means, keep praying!