I had mentioned earlier that the head of the judiciary in East Azerbaijan had said that the prison did not have the “necessary facilities” to carry out Sakineh Mohamadi Ashtiani’s sentence of stoning and that therefore they were considering hanging as an alternative.
Two days after the news of Sakineh’s imminent execution spread, he has now said he was misrepresented!
This is the usual cat and mouse game the regime often plays in order to exhaust those concerned and also cause confusion by giving conflicting statements.
But there can be no confusion. As long as Sakineh is in their prison, she is at risk of execution. According to reports received by the International Committee against Stoning, she has herself been informed of her imminent execution.
This is the Islamic Republic of Iran we are talking about. There are many people who have been executed even though their cases were under review. Remember Delara Darabi?
The International Committee against Stoning has issued the below press release calling on people to continue their efforts and protests and demand Sakineh’s release as well as the release of her lawyer, Houtan Kian…
Here’s information on what you can and must do.
Below is ICAS’ press release:
Two days after Malek Azhdar Sharifi, head of the East Azerbayjan branch of the regime’s judicial system, spoke of the possible execution of Sakineh, because of international pressure and the swift appearance of this news in the international media, he corrected his statements and said they had been misrepresented. Nevertheless, according to information received by the International Committee Against Stoning, even Sakineh herself was informed in prison of the possibility of her execution.
Despite the Christmas and New Year holidays, the news of Sakineh’s possible execution has appeared in many news outlets including CNN, BBC, Al-Arabiyyah, Der Spiegel, and the Italian press as well as many others. The authorities of several governments including those of Germany and France have protested to Iran, demanding Sakineh’s release. In Italy, the mayors of Rome, Florence and a number of other cities have announced that they will rise in defence of Sakineh in collaboration with the International Committee Against Stoning. These protests were covered extensively by the Italian media. Other efforts are also under way in more countries. Human-rights officials in the Brazilian government have contacted the International Committee Against Stoning in order to organise protests against the Islamic Republic after gathering additional information. The authorities of the Islamic Republic have realised that Sakineh has not been forgotten and that killing her will have a high political cost for the Islamic regime.
According to other reports, her lawyer, Houtan Kian, condemned to six years in prison and currently incarcerated in a prison ward reserved for methadone users, has no opportunity to contact anyone outside the jail and is denied family visits. We must also not abandon him.
The Islamic Republic is clearly a murderous regime, and while Sakineh remains its prisoner, she could be executed at any moment. However, with the help of people around the world, Sakineh and Houtan can be delivered from the hands of these Islamic torturers and murderers.
The International Committee Against Stoning asks the noble people of the world, as well as the press, governments and human-rights organisations, to exert pressure in any way they can in pursuit of Sakineh and Houtan’s release by the Islamic Republic.
International Committee Against Stoning
28 December 2011