Open letter to the Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva
Dear President Lula da Silva
Your offer to grant Sakine Ashtiani, who has been sentenced to death for sex outside of marriage, asylum in Brazil is an important step in saving her and her children. I hope that with the many actions and international efforts that millions of people are doing right now we can save Sakine and that she and her children can embrace each other once again soon.
Now that I am writing this letter I see before me the face of Maryam Ayoubi who was stoned to death in 2001. I see the face of Shahnaz, Shahla, Kobra and dozens of other women who were buried up to their chest and were killed by the stones thrown at them. All of this I still see before my eyes. The voices of the children who called me to say: ‘Our mother was stoned to death’ – I still hear them. That is the Islamic regime. The rulers in Iran couldn’t survive one day without executions, terror and spreading fear. Even though the Islamic regime has receded a little due to the pressure of the campaign to save Sakine, it tries to continue spreading fear in society by executing other prisoners, especially political prisoners.
Today, 2 August, nine prisoners were sentenced to death in Kerman. Also, the prosecution in Tehran has sentenced six political prisoners to death, among them Jafar Kazemi who can be executed at any moment. Zeynab Jalalian, another political prisoner is also in imminent danger of being executed. There are more people on the execution list: Mohammad Reza Haddadi was sentenced to death as a minor and can now, having turned 18, be executed at any moment. There are more than 130 minors in prison who have been sentenced to death. The Islamic regime is the only regime in the world that executes minors.
President Lula da Silva, today there are 17 families of political prisoners on hunger strike in front of Evin prison in Tehran in solidarity with the hunger strike that their children inside the prison started a few days ago. This is a protest against the brutality of the prison authorities towards the political prisoners. Also the fate of three young American mountain climbers and the tears of their mothers has saddened people. This regime has arrested the relatives of Mr Mostafaei, Sakine Ashtiani’s lawyer, and taken them as hostage until he turns himself in.
President Lula da Silva, Iran is a country with a brutal and criminal regime. It is a murderous regime that should be condemned by all people and governments. Allow me, as a representative of the oppressed people in Iran, to say that I not only want to save Sakine and abolish stoning, but that I also ask all heads of state not to recognise the Islamic regime as the representative of the Iranian people but to see it as the murderer of people in Iran.
This regime is a government of stoning and executions that puts people in prison every day and cuts off their hands and feet. This is a regime that executes more people per capita than any other government in the world. Such a regime should not be recognised by international organisations and heads of state.
Spokesperson, International Committee against Execution, International Committee against Stoning
2 August 2010
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