Heart4Iran Looking for Innovative Solutions to Share the Gospel and Keep Online Christian Communities Alive as Iran Cracks Down on Mass Media, Free Speech Ahead of Elections

Image is a representative graphic courtesy of Gerd Altmann/Pixabay.

Iran’s Guardian Council released presidential candidates for the June 18 election yesterday. Term limits prevent current President Hassan Rouhani from serving again.

Officials warned journalists that any criticism of the state’s top picks would lead to “repercussions” as Iranian citizens called for an election boycott. The regime is also cracking down on internet and social media access to prevent mass protests.

A longer-lasting mass media blockage is probable in the weeks to come, posing a significant threat to Heart4Iran’s Gospel outreach. “We’re reaching people in Iran through satellite TV and social media,” Heart4Iran President Mike Ansari says.

“When the Iranian government implements security measures to limit and censor people’s access to both of these mediums, it is going to hinder our efforts.”

Media ministry in Iran

Iran signed a 25-year contract with China in March, the details of which are only starting to surface now. “It is our understanding that Iran has asked China to provide technology to limit their population’s access to outside internet,” Ansari says.

Currently, the “average Iranian has access to the world of internet outside of Iran,” he continues. Internet evasion tools like proxy servers allow individuals to bypass government restrictions and blockades.

The hope of Christ is permeating Iranian society through loopholes like these.

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Katey Hearth

CALL TO ACTION

  • Ask the Lord to give Heart4Iran leaders creativity and wisdom.
  • Pray Heart4Iran receives the resources it needs to keep children’s programming online.