Persecuted Pastor Saeed Abedini's Wife Files Domestic Relations Case

The wife of Saeed Abedini, an American pastor freed this month from an Iranian prison as part of a prisoner swap, said on Wednesday that her husband had threatened the end of their marriage and she had taken legal action to ensure their children remain in Idaho.
The wife of Saeed Abedini, an American pastor freed this month from an Iranian prison as part of a prisoner swap, said on Wednesday that her husband had threatened the end of their marriage and she had taken legal action to ensure their children remain in Idaho. (Reuters)

The wife of Saeed Abedini, an American pastor freed this month from an Iranian prison as part of a prisoner swap, said on Wednesday that her husband had threatened the end of their marriage and she had taken legal action to ensure their children remain in Idaho. 

Naghmeh Abedini said her husband landed in Boise on Tuesday and already had a "wonderful reunion" with their children Rebekka, 9, and Jacob, 7, but on the same day she also filed a domestic relations case according to a Idaho state judiciary website. 

She told Reuters she had not filed for divorce, but declined to elaborate and her attorney could not be reached to comment. 

In a statement posted on Facebook, she said on Wednesday that the legal filing was made to ensure the couple's children would remain in Idaho. She also said he demanded three months ago that she do certain things that she did not detail in order to promote him in the eyes of the public or he would end the marriage. 

"In very difficult situations, sometimes you have to establish boundaries while you work toward healing," she said. "I have taken temporary legal action to make sure our children will stay in Idaho until this situation has been resolved. I love my husband, but as some might understand, there are times when love must stop enabling something that has become a growing cancer." 

Naghmeh Abedini previously said in a message to supporters that became public last fall that her husband had been abusive and suffered from a pornography addiction. Reuters has not been able to independently confirm her allegations, and the husband could not be reached for comment through a spokesman. 

Saeed Abedini, a naturalized U.S. citizen, was sentenced by an Iranian court in 2013 to eight years in prison for allegedly compromising Iran's national security by setting up home-based Christian churches there. He told Fox News he was tortured in prison. 

Naghmeh Abedini in her Facebook statement apologized to her followers for not disclosing the abuse sooner. 

"I sincerely had hoped that this horrible situation Saeed has had to go through would bring about the spiritual change needed in both of us to bring healing to our marriage," she said. "Tragically, the opposite has occurred."

© 2016 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.

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