IRAN: Nasrin Sotoudeh

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Nasrin Sotoudeh was born in 1963 to what may be considered a religious middle class family in Iran. She completed her studies in International Law in Shahid Beheshti University in the early 90s. Married to Reza Khandan in 1994, with whom she has two children, Nasrin regards her husband, Reza, as very committed to her work as a women’s rights activist. After completing her Masters degree in International Law, Nasrin took and passed the bar exam successfully in 1995 to become a lawyer. However, her permit to practice law was not granted to her until eight (8) years later.

Stop state violence against women in Iran!



The Islamic Republic of Iran is perpetrating state violence against women, often using religious pretexts to justify such violence, affecting women regardless of their backgrounds . State violence against women takes place on the streets  committed by Basij (State-sanctioned religious police);  in courts  - when State violence takes the form of legal codification that defies the very standards that Iran has committed itself to; and in jails – when it becomes part of the method of extracting confessions in jail, with rape condoned as a means of torture.  Indeed anywhere in the regime.  

Equal Despite Difference



The Equal Despite Difference campaign aims to create a new culture in Iranian society which respects sexual rights and sexual orientation, through awareness raising (amongst the general public, as well as gay and lesbian communities) and strengthening solidarity and support among lesbians.

Iran: Call for Release of Human Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh

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On September 4th, 2010 Nasrin Sotoudeh was arrested and charged with "propaganda against the state" and "conspiracy to disturb order" by Iranian officials and taken to Evin prison. These vaguely worded charges are among several articles in the Islamic Penal Code in Iran relating to “national security” that criminalize the peaceful exercise of rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly. Such provisions have previously been exercised to prosecute lawyers for statements they had made or and activities they had conducted in defence of their clients.

Iran: Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani - Update on her latest televised confession

Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani

The Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women (SKSW) and Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) are gravely concerned over the recent announcement made by the official Iranian television channel on  alleged self-incriminating statements by Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani and several others on state TV last 15 November. We join the rest of the international community in denouncing this latest move by the Iranian authorities which adds more injustice to the case of Sakineh Mohammadi–Ashtiani.

Iran: Women's Rights Lawyer Shadi Sadr Legal Award + Speech

Publication Date: 
November 11, 2010
Shadi Sadr awarded the Katharine & George Alexander Law Prize (November 2010)

The Katharine & George Alexander brings recognition to lawyers who have used their legal careers to help alleviate injustice and inequity. The 2010 Award winner is Shadi Sadr, Iranian Human Rights and Women's Rights lawyer, and WLUML Council Member. The Committee selected Shadi Sadr because of her ceaseless dedication to championing the cause of Iranian women and risking her freedom to defend those who are wrongfully accused and imprisoned.

Below is the text of Sadr's acceptance speech at Santa Clara University in California.

Iran: Don't ignore human rights abuse

Publication Date: 
November 9, 2010
The Guardian
The EU's Catherine Ashton has been called upon to include the issue of human rights in future exchanges with Iran.


The international community must not use Iran's participation in 5+1 talks to deflect attention from its human rights violations.

Iranian human rights activists are calling on the international community not to ignore human rights violations in Iran during their later this week. Iran has agreed to 5+1 talks (UN permanent members and Germany) as proposed by the European Union's high representative on foreign affairs, .

One Day One Struggle: International Campaign to Promote Sexual and Bodily Rights across Muslim Societies

Publication Date: 
November 9, 2010
Coalition for Sexual and Bodily Rights in Muslim Societies (CSBR) / Women for Women's Human Rights (WWHR)
One Day One Struggle Campaign

On November 9, 2010, the 2nd international “One Day One Struggle” Campaign to promote sexual and bodily rights in Muslim societies will take place in 12 countries across Middle East, North Africa, South and Southeast Asia. With diverse, groundbreaking actions and events, almost 50 participating Human Rights organizations, Universities and Municipalities will simultaneously call for public attention to issues like Right to Information, Sexuality Education, Sexual Health, Bodily Autonomy and Sexual Rights of Individuals, LGBTTQ Rights, Sexual Diversity and Islam, Sexuality and Shari’a as well as the struggle to stop sexual rights violations ranging from Polygamy to killings of women, gay people and transsexuals.

IRAN: The Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani case: another test of Iran's extremely flawed justice system

Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani

The Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women (SKSW) and Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) are deeply concerned over the continued denial of human rights in Iran in light of the Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani case. Lack of due process and the right to a fair trial, arbitrary detention, torture, and restrictions of freedom of information, of the press, and of association sadly constitute the status quo in the Islamic Republic.

Iran's Women: A Movement in Transition

Publication Date: 
October 19, 2010

The women’s movement for gender equality in Iran has for thirty years been at the heart of wider political struggles in the Islamic Republic. Sanam Vakil tracks three major phases in its development and identifies the ingredients of a fourth.