Iranian Teenager to Hang forSelf-Defense

Dear Friends,

This story was posted yesterday on the website for The Nation (a left-leaning newspaper in the United States):

Tehran, Iran, Jan. 07 – An Iranian court has sentenced a teenage rape victim to death by hanging after she weepingly confessed that she had unintentionally killed a man who had tried to rape both her and her niece.

The state-run daily Etemaad reported on Saturday that 18-year-old Nazanin confessed to stabbing one of three men who had attacked the pair along with their boyfriends while they were spending some time in a park west of the Iranian capital in March 2005.

Nazanin, who was 17 years old at the time of the incident, said that after the three men started to throw stones at them, the two girls' boyfriends quickly escaped on their motorbikes leaving the pair helpless.

She described how the three men pushed her and her 16-year-old niece Somayeh onto the ground and tried to rape them, and said that she took out a knife from her pocket and stabbed one of the men in the hand.

As the girls tried to escape, the men once again attacked them, and at this point, Nazanin said, she stabbed one of the men in the chest. The teenage girl, however, broke down in tears in court as she explained that she had no intention of killing the man but was merely defending herself and her younger niece from rape, the report said.

Here's a link to the full article:

Katha Pollitt, the columnist who posted the story, suggests writing emails to the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights ( asking that the UN raise the case with Iran. I don't know whether this will help, but it can't make the situation worse and I think it's important to take action.

I know that you are all very eloquent and passionate people who care deeply about human rights, and I would greatly appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to send an email to the High Commissioner. Thanks in advance.

With love and peace,

Shannon - free web hosting. Free hosting with no banners.




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