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Iran: Man is stoned after 11 years in prison

Jafar Kiani was stoned to death in Takestan in the province of Qazvin on 5 July, after serving an 11-year prison term. His crime was adultery. His partner, Mokarameh Ebrahimi, has also been jailed for 11 years along with her two small children, and may be next on the list. It seems only security agents, and not civilians, participated in the stoning.

Amnesty International and other human rights organizations have condemned the execution. They have appealed to the Iranian government not to stone Ebrahimi too. The news has been covered in both mainstream and citizen media.

Record of a Stoning

Asieh Amini, a blogger and journalist has visited the village where the stoning took place and talked with people there. Her report on the stoning has been re-published in several blogs and websites including Meydaan.

She writes:

The village itself is quiet; just a few old men sitting around the streets. A kid sits on top a wall dangling his feet. The first man I ask about the stoning flashes his teeth but doesn’t utter anything. I realize he is hard of hearing. As I repeat my questions louder and louder, the kid notices. I ask him. He shrugs his shoulders. A motorcyclist is passing by. I wave. He stops. He confirms the news without hesitation; pointing to the foothills. I ask, “Are you sure?”

- Saw it myself
– From near?
– No. [laughing] From distance. They wouldn’t let anyone near.
– How come?
– [pointing to distance] All over this area were agents. That dirt road there was closed off from both ends and nobody could pass except authorities.
– How many were they?
– Don’t know. Many. 50. 60. Maybe.
– So you are sure nobody from the village threw the stones?
– Yes, I’m sure. Nobody

“A Martyr of Love”

Z8tun offers [Fa] different theories on this story and calls Kiani, a “martyr of love”. The blogger suggests a few scenarios: 1- Ebrahimi's husband forced her into prostitution; 2- She asked for divorce but in Iran women have no right to divorce; 3- These two people love each other and eloped; 4- Nobody in their home town was ready to throw any stones at him, which is why the authorities moved him to a remote village.

Stoning and international relations!

Mohammad Ali Abtahi, a cleric and blogger, refers to the judge who ordered the stoning of Mr.Kiani, and says [Fa] it is very strange to imagine somebody, who despite being discouraged by legal and religious bodies, does his best to get somebody stoned. Abtahi rejects that because foreigners are against stoning, the judge somehow defies foreigners by ordering such a display. He says doing something just because foreigners are against it, is as much a contradiction to our independence, as following the requests of foreigners blindly.

He says Islam has the capacity to adapt itself to time and place, and the more important thing is to decide whether we want someone to be murdered with stones in the name of Islam.

A story of murder and poverty

Shahrzad comments on [Fa] this story and says only poor people get stoned in this country, and the rich ones always find a way out.

Many will conclude the same as View from Iran did: Stoning is murder… plain and simple.

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