Help Needed: Iranian Woman Sentenced to Stoning Death

Help is needed to preserve the life of Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, an Iranian women who could be stoned to death at any time. Equality Now says it has learned from credible sources that Mohammadi-Ashanit received the sentence after being changed with committing adultery with two men.

Mohammadi-Ashtiani has spent the last five years in jail after receiving an original sentence of 99 lashes in May 2006 for a lesser crime of having “illicit relations” with two men. It was not until September 2006, when the case was taken up by a different court, that  she was charged with adultery.

Despite no strong evidence against her and her denial of the charges, Mohammadi-Ashtiani was convicted on what Equality Now described as simply “the judge’s opinion” that she was guilty. Two of the five councilors on the court reportedly believed “there was no legal proof for the charge of adultery.”

Iranian law does not allow a second charge on an offense in which a person has already been convicted. Seeing that Mohammadi-Ashtiani has already received lashes for her crime, she cannot rightfully be charged again. This, and the fact that stoning to death violates the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to which Iran is a member, is further evidence of the wrongful action being taken against Mohammadi-Ashtiani and women like her.

Indeed, the Guardian reports that Mina Ahadi, a German human rights activist who helped Sakineh’s two children launch the campaign to save her, has received calls from the families of two other women in Tabriz prison (where Mohammadi-Ashtiana is incarcerated). Both Azar Bagheri, 19, and Marian Ghorbanzadeh, 25, have also been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery.

You can join the campaign to help Ms. Mohammadi-Ashtiani and others by sending a letter to Iranian officials asking for her immediate release, as well an end to all sentences to death by stoning, and a comprehensive review of the Civil and Penal  Codes of Iran which discriminate against women.  Equality Now has created a letter which you can simply fill in your name and email; it can be found here. It begins:

I am writing to you about Sekineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, who has been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, a charge she denies…I respectfully ask that you do all you can to ensure that the punishment of stoning against Ms Mohammadi-Ashtiani is immediately rescinded in accordance with Iran’s law that a person cannot be tried for the same crime twice. I note that women are disproportionately convicted for adultery and fornication in Iran and I urge you also to work for the removal of all provisions in the Iranian legal codes that discriminate against, or have a discriminatory impact on, women including those regarding adultery and fornication.

Ms. Mohammadi-Ashtiani may have lost her say in what happens to her, but you have not. Take a minute, send a letter and (feminist fingers crossed) save a life!

[iframe http://www.msmagazine.com/blog_care2_ashianti.asp 240]

Photo of Sekineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani from Equality Now.

Comments

  1. Kenton Sumner says:

    I am writing to you about Sekineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, who has been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery, a charge she denies…I respectfully ask that you do all you can to ensure that the punishment of stoning against Ms Mohammadi-Ashtiani is immediately rescinded in accordance with Iran’s law that a person cannot be tried for the same crime twice. I note that women are disproportionately convicted for adultery and fornication in Iran and I urge you also to work for the removal of all provisions in the Iranian legal codes that discriminate against, or have a discriminatory impact on, women including those regarding adultery and fornication.

  2. Adultery is not one self done crime , in such crime there are two people involved … where are these men?? what are they doing searching for other women ?? I was under the impression men do have sense and more a conscious but here it seems opposite..to let a woman pay for their deeds ..what a SHAMEFUL men!!

  3. patricia w says:

    This is barbarous. I though Iran was a country of educated people. How can this be happening in this day ?

  4. Tom Vitale says:

    I sent the letter. I feel they could “get” me, via my IP address. I did not care. Are we living in like 50,000BC?
    Iranian husbands probably love their wives; fathers probably love their daughters; sone probably love their mothers; brothers probably love their sisters—just like we do.

    I think it just goes to show how insidious is misogyny in BOTH countries and cultures. It masks itself as love, but really is hatred. It masks itself as social justice; but really is hatred. Misogyny is a beast that pretends it doesn’t even exist; but it really is everywhere all at once. It is under the bed, in the bed, at the altar, in the courtroom, in the jail, in the park, at the beach. It is at the top of the highest mountains and at the bottom of the deepest cave. It dwells in the dark and bathes in the light.

    But all people have to do to stop the beast is to love and refuse to play the masculine-feminine game.

  5. Nadine Sampson says:

    I hope this petition can help save this woman of such a terrorizing death. Prayers and thoughts are with you. Its not right that this day in age in any culture that stoning any individual should be tolerated, it is barbaric.

  6. Theresa Currie-Criss says:

    I am joining others around the world to protest this crime against women. Stoning women is against human rights.

  7. Emma walton says:

    I know that according to the bible, adultry is seen a sin in the
    eyes of the ten commandments, however, there is also such a
    thing called human rights. The right for a person to live. It is a sin
    that the rest of the world doesn’t have the same rights and opinions
    as the European Community. Even if there was sufficient evidence
    which, incidently there isn’t, what right has a judge got to take her
    life away for a minor marital wrong doing, it’s hardly murder is it?

  8. Thank you for bringing this horrific situation to our attention. It’s good that this is attracting international outcry but I can’t help but worry that this judge would see a campaign with significant Western support as part of a conspiracy or evidence that the woman had “immoral Western behaviour”. Any thoughts?

  9. Sounds like something from the Middle Ages . . .

    Hey everybody wake up ! ! !

    we have been to the moon and back . . .

    What’s next ? ? ?

    burning at the stake . . .

    for relieving yourself on another planet . . .

  10. gilly safdaeye says:

    It is a very disturbing that the President of Iran who always says his country is very cultured, advanced and better than the West can still have these cruel punishments for women. I do hope this beautiful woman will be freed and be allowed to live a life we in the Western countries have.

  11. Belle Mears says:

    I have written to Hilary Clinton via the White House.gov with regard to this barbaric and uncivilized behavior on the part of Iran.
    Iran should not be permitted to sit in the United Nations right here in New York until they join the civilized world in treating women and men with dignity.
    I am appalled and outraged and sickened at the prospect of a culture like this spreading to my country. Anyone with a pulse and a conscience must raise their voice if they don’t want to be implicated in this kind of terror.
    When will Iran stop brutalizing women and allowing men to go ahead and degrade and abuse them?
    I for one will be watching and never stop commenting until something is done to stop this.
    Hitler went too far before people woke up. This kind of treatment of human beings is evil and must not be allowed to spread.
    I would suggest everyone who can spare a few minutes to stop and think and then take action with a pen and a tongue. Let’s not allow this violence to spread. Together we are mighty. Even one voice raised against evil is powerful.
    Thanks.
    A fellow U.S. Citizen
    All those folks who landed on the beaches at Normandy expect us to continue their work – to be vigilant and to step up to help those who are unable to help themselves due to evil.
    Pens, tongues, networking. White House.gov, Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, President Barack Obama, write them, express your will for them to take action to halt the spread of this evil.

  12. Marilyn Skadra says:

    I agree totally with Belle Mears. This barbaric practice of stoning women to death is so dispicable that Iran should not be allowed any voice in any forum. Hillary Clinton needs to confront this head on, as does this president Barrack Obama – there needs to be outrage over this. Iranian women need to be liberated. I wish they could take up arms and overpower their captors. I will pray to my God for that day.

  13. Paul Anderson says:

    In this day and age it is horrifically absurd this government obviously run by
    male psychopaths is allowed to exist justifying their barbaric actions in the name of religion.
    It is unfathomable to me as a human being not to mention the fact that, We as as a people within any civilized society are responsible for the the protection of our women.

    Those who have participated and/or been involved with these brutal acts of torture and murder should be brought before a World Court Tribunal, in the same way War criminals are today.

    Isn’t this why the United Nations and World Governing agencies were created.
    Why is this still happening in 2010?

  14. Besides the fact of human rights etc…

    Where are these people’s sense of compassion ?

    Can you stone your neighbour,because they commited a human error?…which we all commit once in a while…

    Those people doing the stoning..are murderers …..I can only imagine hurting someone physically,who has maybe murdered my parents or molested my sisters…but

    it would take a lot of anger and hatred..

    how can these people lift a large stone and strike someone repeatedly till they die..and watch them scream and bleed…you are evil..you who lifts the stones to strike..

    May God save your hateful soul..as you seem sinless and pure that you can judge your neighbour ,as if you yourself are a saint.

    Also,most of these women who are stoned are innocent..as men use their accusations to control….why arent the men commiting the adultery stoned also..?

    does this mean ,a muslim woman can be accused easily by two lying men..just because they want to punish her?….

    Muslim woman should rather immigrate to other countries where there is proper laws for human rights…why should they live in fear and be oppressed by men?

    Maybe we should start an organizaton that helps relocate and finance these poor trapped women..I know I would be willing to help in some financial way

    would even open my home for a time…to offer some help….

  15. Iranian law should change for the women after all they are also human.Mr.president should understand people feelings.Every human being has a right to live.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Stefan Baskerville. Stefan Baskerville said: RT @garyyounge: Let's get #Ashtiani trending to help Sakine Mohammadi Ashtani from being stoned to death in Iran. Rally @ 4pm PST. http://bit.ly/bKKiUZ [...]

  2. [...] July 6, 2010 by Alexandra Wildenhaus · for the Ms. Blog [...]

Speak Your Mind

*