Amnesty Appeals for the Lives of Seven Iranian Women

Via Lindsay Beyerstein, Amnesty urgently appeals to its members and concerned people to write to the Iranian government in regard to this impending stoning of seven women in Iran.

Amnesty International has issued an urgent appeal calling on its members to write letters to the Republic of Iran asking them not to stone seven women.

Nearly all of the women have been sentenced to die by stoning for adultery. Officially Iran had placed a moratorium on the cruel and painful practise in 2002, but Amnesty claims sentencing continues. The group has received credible reports that two people were stoned to death in May.

The United Nations Human Rights Committee has ruled that treating adultery and fornication as criminal offences does not comply with international human rights standards.

“The sentence of execution by stoning for adultery breaches Iran’s commitment under article 6(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that death sentences will be imposed ‘only for the most serious crimes’,” Amnesty wrote in its appeal.

Under Shari’a law, a prisoner is buried up to her breast, her hands restrained. Rules also specify the size of the stones which can be thrown so that death is painful and not imminent. Both men and women can be sentenced to die by stoning.

Ali Eteraz has some suggestions for action and a template letter to Iran’s Minister of Justice.