Woman Sentenced to Death in Iran Granted Asylum to Brazil
According to the Iranian state-run news agency, the Brazilian ambassador has formally issued the offer to the Iranian foreign minister today. Iran rejected the previous informal proposition, asserting that Lula da Silva acted upon his merciful nature, being ignorant of the details of the case.
Last month Ashianti was accused by the East Azerbaijan province head of judiciary of numerous crimes, among which she was counting “adultery and murder”. The lawyer at that time, Hootan Kian, asserts the authorities were giving a wrong interpretation to murder and adultery, and were insisting upon finding her guilty of her husband’s death, although she had already been found innocent five years ago.
It is futile to try to understand how come someone who doesn’t have a husband can be accused of adultery (unless the word has the theological bearing in the Jewish Old Testament, when God was calling idolatry “adultery”, but it seems very much unlikely in this unfortunate circumstances) or why is she being judged now, if her adultery could have occurred at least five years ago? Or how is it possible to stand accused of two crimes, one more appalling than the other, and receive the penalty for the less grave of them. Adultery bears the penalty of stoning, while hanging is the penalty for murder in Iran. Suffice it to say that a widow took a bullet into her skull on Sunday in the neighboring Afghanistan for having cheated on God knows who.
Anyway, Ashianti said she was “grateful” for this proposition and would “graciously” accept the invitation, according to her son, Sajjad, who visited her in Tabriz, in prison.
Iranian authorities are expected to make a final decision soon. They have to choose whether to kill her by stoning (in a country where a woman can commit adultery in a state of widowhood, it comes as no surprise that the judges can revisit a death sentence after having commute it to something else), to kill her by any other means, or to let her go to Brazil. The spokeswoman of the International Committee against Stoning said that if she is executed it will entirely be political, it will have nothing to do with the case itself.
It looks like even though they really hate it, the Iranians won’t have any alternative but to ship Mrs. Ashianti to Brazil. In May Brazil made a deal with Iran that would provide the Islamic regime with enriched uranium for medical purposes. They can’t miss out on that for “humanitaria reasons”. Furthermore, Brazil abstained from the vote in United Nations Security Council that was trying to impose tougher sanctions against Iran.
Meanwhile, Iran goes on treading upon every human right in the book and sentencing 7 members of the Baha’i religion to 20 years in prison each for alleged propaganda, actions against Islamic order, and establishment of illegal administration. It is believed that in fact it is all about sheer religious persecution.11