Saudi Arabia: Yohan Nese and Vasantha Sekhar Vara

Two Indian Christians imprisoned without charge in Saudi Arabia for attending a prayer meeting have been released. Yohan Nese (31) and Vasantha Sekhar Vara (28) had been arrested on January 21st, 2011 when religious police raided an apartment where they were attending a prayer meeting with other Indian nationals.
The two Christians were interrogated, beaten and pressured to convert to Islam. The next day they were sentenced to 45 days in prison on accusation of converting Muslims to Christianity. Both men were detained for much longer than their initial sentence, however, although no further charges were brought against them.

Vasantha was released on May 30th after 129 days of detention, whilst Yohan was released on July 12th after 172 days in prison.
The conditions in the prison were horrible. Cramped into a cell with 700 other prisoners with hardly enough room to stand, the two men had to sleep in shifts, taking it in turns to sit.
Soon after both Christians were released from prison, they left Saudi Arabia and returned to India.

Sources: Friends of the Martyred Church, Compass Direct

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