Iran tells world: don’t make woman’s stoning a human rights issue

By Reuters Staff
September 7, 2010

stoningForeign countries should not interfere in Iran’s legal system and stop trying to turn the case of a woman sentenced to be stoned to death for adultery into a human rights issue, Tehran said on Tuesday.

(Photo: Demonstrator against stoning in Trafalgar Square, London, August 28, 2010/Paul Hackett)

The case of the 43-year-old mother of two, condemned to death for illicit sex and charged with involvement in her husband’s murder, provoked an international outcry, with Brazil offering her asylum and the Vatican speaking out against the “brutal” punishment.

stoning 2A government spokesman said the furor was based on false information about Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani’s case.  “Unfortunately, (they are) defending a person who is being tried for murder and adultery, which are two major crimes of this lady and should not become a human rights issue,” Foreign Ministry Ramin Mehmanparast told a news conference.

(Photo: Protest against stoning sentence for Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani in Paris August 28, 2010/Mal Langsdon)

Murder, adultery, rape, armed robbery, apostasy and drug trafficking are all punishable by death under Iran’s interpretation of sharia law enforced since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

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