Sakineh Ashtiani Still At Risk

Yesterday, misleading reports surfaced that Sakineh Ashtiani may have been released from prison in Iran.  Yet today we received reports that Iran’s state-controlled Press TV will tonight broadcast a new “confession” by the Iranian woman who faces possible execution by stoning or hanging.

Philip Luther, Amnesty’s Deputy Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme explains: “If reports are accurate that tonight’s broadcast will contain another televised ‘confession’ from Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, its potential impact on her case should not be underestimated.  If the authorities are seeking to use this ‘confession’ to try to construct a new case against her, for a crime that she’s already been tried and sentenced for, we would condemn this in the strongest terms.”

Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani was sentenced to a 10-year prison term in 2006 for the murder of her husband, which her lawyer has said was subsequently reduced to five years for “complicity” in the murder.

She was also sentenced to death by stoning for “adultery while married”. Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani is held in Tabriz Prison, East Azerbaijan province, awaiting the outcome of a judicial review of her stoning sentence.

According to media reports a production team from Press TV collected Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani from prison, along with her son Sajjad Qaderzadeh, who is also currently detained, and took them to her former home to produce a “visual recount of the crime at the murder scene”, apparently for a “documentary”.