ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – Two St. Louis area men said they have received death threats from Iran and they are taking those threats seriously. The said a fatwa, or religious decree, has been put on their heads.
The letter was sent to Ali Bahkti and his pastor Mike Salazar. The envelope indicates it is from Tehran, Iran. It is apparently signed by a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Army. Mike Salazar said, ‘It`s a death threat very simply.’ Ali Bakhti added, ‘Religious decree to kill.’ Salazar said, ‘It`s something to be taken seriously.’
Ali Bakhti said he once served in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard when he was a teenager. Bakhti said, ‘Dirty bombs, convert civilian streets into a mine fields.’ He said he was even assigned a suicide mission, to blow up an Israeli disco. But, he had a dramatic change of heart and faith and converted to Christianity and moved to the U.S. He met Pastor Salazar at church and since then the two have been spreading their beliefs to church goers. The two men believe that Islam is a religion that could easily radicalize a Muslim into a terrorist.
Salazar said, ‘Our message isn`t to offend Muslims.’ But, it apparently has. Now the two are under a death decree that they fear could be carried out any moment. They say that won`t stop them from preaching what they strongly believe in. Bakhti said, ‘I`m doing it for the kingdom of God.’ Salazar said, ‘Even if you die doing it.’
Salazar has reported the letter to the F.B.I. The feds won`t either confirm or deny if they are investigating. We contacted a Mosque in West County for a comment from the Muslim Community but have not yet heard from them.