Saeed Abedini’s Wife Seeks Separation

The wife of an American pastor who was imprisoned for nearly four years in Iran filed court documents to legally separate from him the same day he returned home to Idaho, court records show.

Abedini wife


On Wednesday, Panahi released a statement through her Facebook account saying that she experienced abuse throughout most of her marriage. She confirmed the posting to The Associated Press.

“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,” Panahi wrote. “Tragically, the opposite has occurred.”

Panahi said she hopes counseling will help resolve the marital problems.




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  • Lillian DeLuise Kunz

    Terrible to hear!

  • Yankee ’42

    1. Was he radicalized into islam?
    2. Is he a wife beater?
    3. Did she met Jodie, while he was gone?

    • Alicia Baird

      I thought that too… was he pushed to accept islam while in prison?

  • Reality

    Sounds more like she was cheating on him, looking for an excuse to try and garner the ave idiots sympathy by trying to play victim based upon absolutely nothing. She is making accusations against him all of the sudden

    • Wanda Tumlin

      This is not all of a sudden. Just because you just heard about it doesn’t mean it hasn’t been going on since their marriage.

      • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        You do not know what you’re talking about. Wait until the full story comes out. It may take awhile, but it WILL come out. Follow the money trail.

      • Reality

        It is all the sudden. She just now, after the years of marriage and him being gone, makes these claims. Funny how there is zero evidence to substabtiate her accusations, and if it had been happening why did she not file for divorce while he was gone? Maybe because she was looking for attention and too busy cheating on him. Wake up. An unsubstantiated accusation does not mean it happened, and coupled with the timing casts much doubt upon it.

  • CatoYounger

    Christian or not, he’s from that culture.

    • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      God is bigger than any culture.

  • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

    Wow, this is really sad to hear. You can NOT beat your wife and be a Christian! This is a huge problem in the Christian Church. Is not ever discussed, from the pulpit. As women we are taught growing up in church that divorce is not an option. Women are made to feel guilty, or that somehow they caused the abuse. Women can struggle for many years trying to be a good Christian, a good wife and be abused behind closed doors emotionally and physically, and afraid to leave and have no suport.

    God gave this man the most incredible miracle. I hope the he will take this serious, and get himself some help.

    I’m going to make a comment about the posts below mine. Surely, people need to slow down and read and absorb a story. Otherwise, you end up with a story in your head that is complete opposite of what happened.

    The pastor’s wife has been abused in the past, on his return he has obviously went back to some form of the abuse, and that is why she asked for a legal separation, for her protection, which she is rightfully entitled to. She had stated that she had hoped the situation had changed him, and by that she means by the abuse he received. That maybe he would have a change in his heart and understand what he is done to her. She also stated that she hoped the counseling would help and heal the marital problems. So she’s obviously not filing for divorce and is trying to get him some help. The bottom line is God can change any situation, any heart or mind, as long as the person is willing to open up their heart to God’s correction.

    Instead of jumping on the bandwagon and automatically trying to make a woman out to be a a whore because she’s trying to protect herself and her children, maybe you shouldn’t readily give your opinion on a subject such as abuse!

    • DidIt

      She filed the day he returned! She hasn’t seen him in four years! She says she hoped the imprisonment would change him. How would she know if it did or not? Not ever condoning violence between two people, but based on this, she is more suspect than he is at this point. How about saying “I’m glad you’re home. Would you like a cup of coffee?” before heading to the courthouse. How loved he must feel that she didn’t even welcome him when he arrived back in the country. Time for her to go back to her boyfriend.

      • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

        Did you happen to see the video of him getting off the plane? Apparently not! He hugged everybody else and acted like she wasn’t there. His behavior towards her was extremely odd and cold. It’s not like she hasn’t been out publicly for the last four years fighting for his safe return! So he should feel extremely loved and supported!

        Maybe, after being away from him for 4 years, his control and domination, her head was clear, she put things into plan for protection for herself and her children, just in case it started back up. It probably was her only chance of filing since we both know how these women usually get treated and Just maybe, it started back up once they got in their home out of the view of people.

        Maybe, she’s been going to counseling to deal with her husband’s imprisonment. Maybe, during that counseling she revealed that she been abused and just maybe her counselor instructed her on what to do!

        She could have filed for divorce while he was gone! She file for legal separation, she didn’t have to do that! She’s trying to work it out!

        Are you a survivor of domestic violence? Of course not, or if you were you would never say such things!

        I am a survivor and you need to shut up!!! You have no idea what you’re talking about you judgemental fool!!

        • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

          He acted like she wasn’t there because SHE WASN’T THERE. That was his SISTER! She refused to receive counseling under Franklin Graham, she refused to fly to Germany to be with Saeed, and she refused to meet him in Iran when given opportunity. There’s the question of unaccounted-for money, too. I don’t believe a word this woman says.

          • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

            Do you have any links regarding the things that you’re accusing her of? I also would like if you have it a link to evidence that that was his sister.

            As far as her not meeting him in Iran or Germany, I can understand her concerns regarding her children and not wanting to leave them alone out of her presence with his family here since she mentioned the abuse back in November. She stated (in Nov.) that she was retreating from the public, pray and concentrate on what she should do. She said that he was asking her to do some things publicly that she could not go along with.

            The fact is…we don’t know all the facts and it is wrong and irresponsible to point the finger when we don’t know.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Pretty much every news outlet (including a statement from Franklin Graham) identified the sister and said that Naghmeh stayed behind with the children. Everyone else’s wives showed up for them, including Jason Rezaian’s, who was even held by police at one time. As far as Naghmeh not wanting to leave her children alone, well, she did it often enough when she traveled in the last few years, and all of it wasn’t for Saeed. A Boise news site had to close down comments because locals were writing some unflattering things about Naghmeh. A name was named. An underground Iranian Christian worker made a statement to the press and said that it was suspect why Naghmeh was coming forward now. He said that there had been problems in the past but that Naghmeh’s behavior was suspect. If you follow Naghmeh’s story. you will see that there is much discrepancy. For example, she claimed the “sexual abuse” she suffered while Saeed was in prison was him looking at porn and buying live stream movies from Amazon on her account. Well, you can’t livestream movies from Amazon if the account has a different IP region from the one you registered with. Specificall, you can’t livestream porn from a US Amazon account into an Iranian prison. When she was called out on that, she changed her story to the one about him asking her to do things publicly that she couldn’t go along with. Her story changes depending upon what she’s been called out on. Look, there may have been problems in the past, but as the Christian underground worker said, why now? Why is she coming out with this now? Why did she take tens of thousands of dollars (some say it was more) from people for Saeed, then dump him and not account for the money?

          • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

            You did not understand my point about her not going to meet him out of the country since she’s already made claims against him, his family could take the children and disappear. This happens all the time.

            I am suspect at the claim that she said he was viewing pornography from prison. Anyone with with a brain would know that would not be happening, even her. The rest of what you’ve told me is news to me, I still don’t buy it because I’ve never heard of any of this and I read news all day long, everyday. I do realize that things get buried depending on the agenda of the media for the day. I plan on researching this more. I just think if all this was true what you’re saying, there would be a whole lot more negative towards her on her Facebook page.

            Either way, if it is true and it’s all on her.. It does not matter whether you put out good or bad deeds, blessings or judgement always comes full circle at some point.

            I also know that depending on what the agenda is anyone’s character can be assassinated in the news whether the facts are true or false. I just think it’s better to wait and see and not believe the hype.

            This type of behavior is exactly what the Jews did to Jesus. It’s like everyone has a bloodlust to see someone fail or fall. People can’t wait to speak negative about someone.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            You failed to understand that Saeed would not want to take the children out of the country since he will be jailed if he returns to Iran. He was beaten and tortured in prison to the point of having internal injuries. Do you really think he wants to return there?

            You clearly haven’t read all the news, because there’s so much more out there. They had to shut comments down on one site because of what was revealed. I suspect there’s going to be an investigation into the finances, or at least there should be. Saeed endured torture rather than deny Jesus Christ, so obviously some change has overcome him.

            As far as Facebook goes, Naghmeh can control anything that’s up there. I suspect she’s changed her story so many times because those who know are calling her out on the discrepancies.

          • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

            I’ve tried to be nice, you continue to have a condescending attitude. I know about Saeed, have followed his story and signed many petitions as well as keeping others informed. Excuse me If I choose not to follow after the smutt news that you do. If you are a Christian you shouldn’t be pointing your finger, you should have a better attitude and be praying for them and their marriage. Don’t believe everything you read. Since I have converted former Muslims in my family who deals with families and situations such as these, I know a bit more about the culture. Don’t be so ignorant to think that children can’t disappear along with Saeed and his family to other countries. Your attitude is disrespectful and embarrassing. Like I said, the Jews had the same kind of attitude with Jesus. You want to see her be a failure, maybe you should do some soul seaching. Even if she’s gulity of any of it…you don’t know her life or her story nor do you really know his. Get rid of your blood thirst and repent yourself before casting a stone. I am so tired of seeing this type of attitude out of’s discusting and wrong.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            Tabykatt, I am sorry that you feel I’ve been condescending. I assure you that was not my intention. As far as casting a stone goes, you I’m afraid, along with others, are taking aim at Saeed, a man you do not know. I am not getting my news from “smut sites”, as you assume. Underground Christian workers, along with brothers I know who were in the same prison as Saeed, have been concerned about the family for some time. Your assumption that I do not know specifics is wrong. As far as your judgmental attitude towards a persecuted man goes, I’ll leave you to it. The news will break soon enough. Even if it takes years, the truth WILL out.

          • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

            Yes, the truth does always come out. As I said before prayer needs to be for both of them and their marriage. God bless you and have a great weekend! ✌

          • Wanda Tumlin

            She did not refuse counseling under Franklin Graham. She already had the court date set and couldn’t miss it. How was she to know when he’d get released? Did you? There is no unaccounted-for money. Everything she’s got, she earned.

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            That’s incorrect. She had promised Franklin Graham that she would show up for counseling and then kept changing her travel plans. While it took Naghmeh by surprise that Saeed was released when he was, it did not take the rest of us, who have been working for his release, by surprise. As far as the money goes, Naghmeh did not “earn” donations. The money was given for Saeed’s medical care, and has obviously not been used for it. She did not even bother to move into the house that the church bought for her. There is so much more. You will see.

    • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      She had all this in the works long before she even knew he was being released. Her story has too many discrepancies to be true. There may have been abuse in the past along with police reports – who knows? – but what she’s claiming now just doesn’t add up.


    Obviously, one cannot (or shouldn’t, rather) take as Gospel the self-serving representations of a spouse seeking a separation or divorce. Indeed, assuming arguendo that there was any domestic violence prior to the 4-year-long wrongful imprisonment in Iran, it would call into question her motives or mental state in vehemently lobbying for her allegedly brutal “better half”‘ s release. Were there 911 calls? Police reports that were filed? Was the pastor being cuckolded during his captivity? Unfortunately, like so many happily-ever-after endings, this fairy tale reunion is ending on a dark, shadowy note. To Be Continued.

    • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

      It is obvious by your response that you know nothing about the effects of domestic violence. What it does to a woman physically or mentally. Being that she’s a Christian, she did the right thing by trying to secure his safety and safe return home to this country. Self-seeking spouse? If you’re a Christian, how about praying for instead of pointing the finger seems to me you don’t know much about the Bible like the other people on here with blood thirst. You should be ashamed of yourself

      • MAURICE S. KANE. JR.

        You should be ashamed of yourself with your gratuitous ad hominem attacks (under cloak of anonymity) which ignorantly assume that I have less “knowledge” than you concerning the Bible, domestic violence (which isn’t gender-monopolized by women) and family law.

        • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

          I should be ashamed of calling you out for your rude and UN Christian like remarks?

          What anonymity am i under? That’s my picture and that’s my name as I assume yours is too?

          Your comments reek of someone who’s been burnt. If you were so aware, you would never make such comments and allegations against someone, most especially since none of us know the true story since we didn’t live in that household!

          The news is very upsetting for me, and some terrible things might come out, but we don’t know that! Everyone is just assuming! As Christians, we should be saddened by this news, but knowing that we have not walked in her shoes, we should be compassionate, having the love of Christ inside of us, praying for her, her husband, their children and most importantly their marriage.

          Everyday I am saddened and greatly troubled by many in the Christian world that I see on a daily basis pointing and and judging others, almost as if they hope for the worst… Instead of praying for the best outcome.

          Being that I have worked in the domestic violence arena, working with men and women, I am aware the subject is not dominated by women. This has nothing to do with the bad example(s) I am seeing here.

          Cuckold, really? Kind of a trashy by word and thought. Are you hoping that will be the outcome?

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            YOU are assuming. You are angrily accusing people of doing the very things you are doing. You do not know these people, and you don’t know pertinent details. The truth WILL out.

          • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

            You should refer back to my last comment to you about your dishonesty in all your posts.

            I absolutely am not doing the things that you all are.

            I’m calling you out on your own UN godly speech. Btw, how many accounts do you have?

          • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

            I have one account, Tabykatt, and ALL my posts have been both truthful and consistent. I see that you have a habit of falsely accusing people you don’t know. That’s UN godly speech if ever I saw it. When the full truth comes out – and it will – you will kick yourself for missing the obvious. Have a good day.

    • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

      The truth is going to come out. Please pray for Saeed and the children.

    • Wanda Tumlin

      Yes, police reports were filed before he ever left to go to Iran.

      • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        One report, and the abuse claims were dismissed. Saeed pled to disturbing the peace. Naghmeh tried to retract her abuse claims, and said she phoned in the heat of an argument.

      • MAURICE S. KANE. JR.

        Acknowledged. That would be consistent with current information concerning her filing for marital separation.

  • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    I don’t believe Naghmeh is being completely truthful. Why doesn’t someone look into what happened to the tens of thousands of dollars donated for Saeed? Has Naghmeh accounted for that? How about the house the church bought for her that she never bothered to move into? Or why not ask her why she changed her name and removed her wedding ring months prior to Saeed’s release? Too much doesn’t add up here. Prayers for Saeed and his children.

    • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

      This comment right here proves you are a being dishonest!

      Your earlier comments to me, telling me you are in the know because you have such close connections. You are another person pointing the finger…who knows nothing, you are just assuming! When I asked you for proof or links to certain things you stated…you wouldn’t provide info.

      Prayers for Saeed and the children? Why not for his wife, their marriage, family, and relationship with God?

      • Guest✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

        Hi Tabbykatt – I did not mislead you in any way. Nothing I said contradicts itself. I am suggesting the media look into the financial details. It is eye opening.

  • dede_forreal

    Okay…how many of you were in their household and saw firsthand what occurred between this husband and wife and know anything of the situation. I know that I was not. What I do know is living under the abuse of a spouse. There are many things which do not make sense to someone on the outside looking in. Many factors, many outcomes. Please try and remember to lift them both up for healing…allow them to work on their problems themselves. Only they and God truly know the entire story…no matter what happens in their marriage, they both will need healing to live life to the fullest and to raise these children to be fruitful believers. Treat them as God’s precious children….as you yourselves would like to be treated. Quit with the speculation into his culture and whether she had a boyfriend while he was gone…love them as Christ would love each and everyone of us.

    • Deplorable Covfefe & winning

      Amen! Exactly my point! Your head and heart are in the correct place! Right Christian attitude!

  • Chet

    Ah, dear Lord God, this is utterly awful news. It is disheartening, dispiriting and just not supposed to happen within the body of Christ. After the Hell on Earth situation this entire family has been subjected to via wicked men comes myriad prayers offered for support, pleas for his safety, the immediate release and reuniting of of this brother in Christ with his own. God ultimately provides the victory and just when concerned brothers and sisters in Christ rejoice and become exceedingly glad, the Devil once again rears his ugly head. He must be licking his chops at this time as he spreads discouragement and dissention among those that are Christ’s. And, oh, how the world, the unsaved, the purposely ungodly love this kind of stuff within Christianity. All such serves to magnify them and their willful ungodliness.

    Hopefully, brother Franklin will be first among other consecrated Holy Spirit anointed believers to step in and offer the apparent much need counseling and not secular sources. Jesus saves and delivers…

  • David

    It is the hypothesis that fits the facts: that she was doing someone else on the side.