Upon this rock
The human rights group says the Iranian legal system unfairly discriminates against women and is demanding an immediate moratorium on the penalty.
Under Iranian law women are buried up to their breasts before stones are dropped on them. Its penal code states the stones used should "not be large enough to kill the person by one or two strikes; nor should they be so small that they could not be defined as stones".
Women are more likely to be stoned to death because of their unequal treatment before the law and courts, in what Amnesty says is a clear violation of international standards.
A woman's testimony is worth half that of a man and the age of criminal responsibility is lower, making Iranian women especially vulnerable to conviction for adultery.
"Stoning people to death is an inhumane punishment, specifically designed to increase the suffering of the victim. The Iranian authorities should abolish stoning immediately, and should abandon the practice of executing people for committing adultery," Amnesty International UK's director Kate Allen said.
"Women are not treated equally in Iran, in the home and in the courts, and this means that they are particularly at risk.
"Women and men inside Iran are fighting for an end to this horrendous practice and in some cases they have met with success. But we must show them international support."
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Prior to carrying out the stoning, prior to their death, these two people were treated as if they were dead. In accordance with the Islamic tradition, their bodies were washed as if they were lifeless corpses, and wrapped in the kafan or white shroud. Then their wrapped bodies were buried in the ground, Mahboubeh’s body was buried up to her shoulders, and Abbas was buried up to his waist. The crowd, who had gathered to stone the two to death slowly as specified by law, then targeted them with their stones. All this took place without any mention of it in the public media of the country.
Apart from the above mentioned two cases, at least eleven people, nine women and two men as listed below have been condemned to be stoned to death. Their situation is grave. It is also possible that there are other people who have been condemned to death by stoning and we are not aware of it.
1 Ms. Parisa A. (Adel Abad Prison, Shiraz)
2 Ms. Kobra N. (Tabriz Prison, Tabriz)
3 Ms. Kheireyeh V. (Sepidar Prison, Ahwaz)
4 Ms. Iran A. (Sepidar Prison, Ahwaz)
5 Ms.Malak (Shamameh) Ghorbani (Orumieh Prison, Orumieh)
6 Ms.Hajieh Esmailvand (Jolfa Prison, Jolfa)
7 Ms.Soghra Molawyi (Varamin Prison, Varamin)
8 Ms.Ashraf Kallhori (Evin Prison, Tehran)
9 Ms. Fatemeh (Tehran)
10 Mr.Abdollah Farivar (Sari Prison, Sari)-Male
11 Mr. Najaf A. (Abdel-Abad Prison, Shiraz)-Male
According to Article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, signed and ratified by Iran in 1975, “in countries which have not abolished the death penalty, sentence of death may be imposed only for the most serious crimes”. Article 7 of the same covenant states that “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment.” Despite ratifying the above covenant, the Islamic penal code gives the judges the right to sentence the accused to death by stoning even when the crime of adultery has not been proved according to the same penal code’s standards and requirements. Article #105 of the Islamic penal code gives the judges the absolute right to condemn the accused to death by stoning solely based on the judge’s subjective interpretation of the case.