Germany seeks release of 'journalists' held in Iran

Publication Date: 
October 12, 2010
BBC News, The Guardian, RFE/RL
Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says her government wants to secure the release of two foreigners arrested in Iran - believed to be German reporters.

Human Rights Crisis in Iran Press Conference

Publication Date: 
September, 2010


On Friday, September 17, 2010, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, in partnership with Human Rights Watch and the Nobel Women's Initiative, held a panel discussion in New York on the human rights crisis in Iran. Panelists included Nobel Peace Prize Laureates Shirin Ebadi and Mairead Maguire, Iran researcher at Human Rights Watch Faraz Sanei, and Campaign Director Hadi Ghaemi.

Update: Iran: Release of Shiva Nazar Ahari

Shiva Nazar Ahari released


The Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) international solidarity network and the Global Campaign to Stop Killing and Stoning Women (SKSW campaign) welcome the news that Shiva Nazar Ahari was released from prison on Sunday 12 September 2010. 


However, though she is free now, her sentence will be given in approximately two weeks’ time.  One of the charges against Ms. Nazar Ahari is moharebeh (enmity with God), which can be punishable by death in Iran. We therefore urge you to write to the Iranian officials and the embassy of Iran in your country to welcome the release of Ms. Nazar Ahari and to urge all charges against her in connection with her peaceful exercise of her rights to freedom of expression and association to be dropped.


A sample letter is attached.

Shiva Nazar Ahari Iranian human rights defender released

Publication Date: 
September 12, 2010
Shiva Nazar Ahari


Shiva Nazar Ahari, a 26 year old notable Iranian human rights defender, was released today after an ongoing international campaign on Islamic regime

Shiva nazar ahari former speaker of the student committee for the defense of political prisoners in Iran and current speaker of the committee for human rights reporters in Iran, had been arrested in Desember 2009 on her way to Qom city in Iran. 

Campaigning must continue to end stoning

Publication Date: 
August 13, 2010
The Australian


SAKINEH Mohammadi Ashtiani could be stoned to death or hanged in Iran within days.

Facing arrest, her lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, fled to Norway via Turkey, where he was briefly detained. His wife and two relatives were held hostage in Tehran's Evin prison. They have since been released on bail. Non-government organisations campaigned forcefully on their behalf. However, few Muslim or non-Muslim leaders have spoken out against the criminalisation of adultery and its punishment by stoning.

Dr Mohammad Javad Larijani, Secretary General of Iran's High Council for Human Rights, believes the ancient custom, revived after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, is consistent with Islam. Article 104 of the Iranian Penal Code states: "The stones should not be too large so that the person dies on being hit by one or two of them; nor should they be so small that they could not be defined as stones." Members of the community, often family and in-laws of the accused, carry out the deed. According to Larijani, international protests are part of a destabilising political campaign orchestrated by Western nations, an argument the UN appears to accept without dispute.

Iran: Shiva Nazar Ahari's will face 3 charges on 4 September

Publication Date: 
September 3, 2010


Writing about Shiva Nazar Ahari is more than writing about a human rights activist and fighter. It’s writing about those who take up the mantle of struggle to fight for establishing and consolidating their countrymen’s basic rights, without having a political agenda.  Some bear prison and torture, others exile and refuge camps.  Still, Shiva Nazar Ahari’s case is a dangerous one and the silence of the media about her is reprehensible, especially as her lawyer says Shiva’s trial date is set for September 4, for charges of moharebeh, war on god, which is punishable by execution.

On the latest developments in her case, her lawyer says: “One of Shiva Nazar Ahari’s three charges is moharebeh.  I’m wondering how to defend her in court on that one! In a conversation with my colleagues, I told them that if a few more charges like this are issued [for my clients], I’ll withdraw from all of my cases. Shiva Nazar Ahari’s trial will be held on Sept. 4, and I really have no idea what will happen –what verdict will be issued, based on what line of reasoning. If they are going to sentence her using the same logic with which they charged her, her situation may be dangerous. This is a charge that receives the death penalty.”  

Vatican condems sentencing of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani

Publication Date: 
September 5, 2010
Associated Press
Pope Benedict XVI


VATICAN CITY – The Vatican raised the possibility Sunday of using behind-the-scenes diplomacy to try to save the life of an Iranian widow sentenced to be stoned for adultery.

In its first public statement on the case, which has attracted worldwide attention, the Vatican decried stoning as a particularly brutal form of .

'Carla Bruni is a prostitute', says Iranian newspaper

Publication Date: 
August 30, 2010
BBC News
Photo Credit: BBC


An Iranian newspaper has called Carla Bruni, France's first lady, a "prostitute" after she attacked Iran's plan to stone a woman to death.

Crime (Sex) and Punishment (Stoning)

Publication Date: 
August 21, 2010
New York Times
New York Times


It may be the oldest form of execution in the world, and it is certainly among the most barbaric. In the West, death by stoning is so remote from experience that it is best known through Monty Python skits and lurid fiction like Shirley Jackson’s short story “The Lottery.”

Yet two recent real world cases have struck a nerve: a young couple were stoned to death last week in northern Afghanistan for trying to elope, in a grim sign of the ’s resurgence. And last month, an international campaign rose up in defense of an Iranian woman, , who had been sentenced to death by stoning on adultery charges.

IRAN: Prosecutor urges tighter checks for women's Islamic dress code

Publication Date: 
July 18, 2010

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's prosecutor called on Sunday for tighter checks on women who fail to observe Islamic dress code in public, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported.

Under Iran's Sharia law, imposed after the 1979 Islamic revolution, women are obliged to cover their hair and wear long, loose-fitting clothes. Violators can receive lashes, fines or imprisonment.

"Unfortunately the law ... which considers violation of the Islamic dress code as a punishable crime, has not been implemented in the country in the past 15 years," said general prosecutor Gholamhossein Mohseni-Ejei.

"Under the law, violators of public chastity should be punished by being sentenced to up to two months in jail or 74 lashes."