Nick’s Story

Conversion to Christianity by those born into Muslim families in Iran is considered apostasy and is a crime. If caught in underground churches Christian converts are jailed with long sentences that include torture. Those seen as preaching or repeat “offenders” can be sentenced to death.

I’m an engineer, in my mid-twenties, a soccer fanatic and a convert to Christianity. In 2013 I was forced to flee to avoid arrest and torture for changing my religion. I arrived by boat at Christmas Island after 19 July 2013. People from my boat were split up. Some stayed on Christmas Island and were soon sent to Australia, some were sent to Nauru and some to Manus Island Remote Processing Centre in PNG.  I was sent to Manus.

Despite this I remained hopeful of finding safety and freedom. Then in February 2014 when guards and locals invaded the compounds I had my head stomped on by a G4S guard. My hope started to wither. I tried to remain sociable and I continued to play soccer until mid-2014 when I injured my knee playing on the unsuitable surface in unsuitable footwear. I ended up on crutches.

IHMS and Immigration continued to deny me an MRI and overdosed me on anti-inflammatories and pain-killers until I developed stomach problems. I can no longer play sport or indeed take part in any physical activities. I can’t eat properly and I’ve lost a lot of weight and all my muscle. My mood continued to deteriorate and I have been both angry and depressed.

By the middle of 2015 I started self-harming and became actively suicidal. Each time I hurt myself I’m put in the mental health area but it’s like a prison room and I get anxious and bang my head. So then they put me under guard. And then they return me to my compound until I hurt myself again and the process is repeated. They know I can’t get better while they keep me in the detention environment but they don’t care. I can’t go home but I can’t stay here. I need safety and I need

 

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