Iranian woman hanged for killing ‘man who tried to rape her’ after a final reunion with her mother in prison
- Reyhaneh Jabbari, 26, was sentenced to death in 2009 by an Iranian court
- She was found guilty of murdering a government intelligence operative
- Her mother Shole Pakravan received a phone call on Friday telling her to visit her daughter in prison for the last time
- Amnesty International failed in last-ditch bid to spare Jabbari’s life
Reyhaneh Jabbari, 26, pictured in a Tehran courtroom in 2008, will be hanged in the early hours on Saturday for killing a man she claims raped her
Iran has hanged a woman convicted of murdering a man she said was trying to rape her.
The official IRNA news agency says Reyhaneh Jabbari was hanged at dawn Saturday for premeditated murder. It quoted the court ruling as rejecting the claim of attempted rape and saying all evidence proved that Jabbari had plotted to kill Morteza Abdolali Sarbandi, a former intelligence agent.
The court ruling says Jabbari, 27, stabbed Sarbandi in the back in 2007 after purchasing a knife two days earlier.
The execution was carried out after Sarbandi’s family refused to pardon Jabbari or accept blood money.
Amnesty International and other human rights groups had called on Iran’s judiciary to halt the execution.
Jabbari was sentenced to death by a criminal court in Tehran in 2009 after what Amnesty International called a ‘deeply flawed investigation and trial which failed to examine all of the evidence’.
The date of her execution has been repeatedly delayed but Jabbari’s mother Shole Pakravan received a phone call on Friday telling her to visit her daughter in prison for the last time as she would be hanged on Saturday.
Amnesty International issued a failed last-ditch plea to the government to spare her life.
‘This abhorrent execution must not be allowed to take place, particularly when there are serious doubts about the circumstances of the killing,’ said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Middle East and North Africa Deputy Director at Amnesty International.
‘Instead of continuing to execute people, authorities in Iran should reform their judicial system, which dangerously relies on processes which fail to meet international law and standards for fair trial.
‘Under international human rights standards people charged with crimes punishable by death are entitled to the strictest observance of all fair trial guarantees.’
Jabbari’s mother has previously given emotional interviews discussing her daughter’s plight and begging the Iranian government to spare her life.
Speaking earlier this month via Skype to Fox News, Pakravan said: ‘I wish they would come tie a rope around my neck and kill me instead, but to allow Rayhaneh to come back home.’
‘The only thing I want … from God, from people around the world … in any way, in any form, is I just want to bring Rayhaneh back home,’ she added.
Heartbreak: Shole Pakravan (left) received a phone call on Friday telling her to visit her 26-year-old daughter Reyhaneh Jabbari’s (right) in prison for the last time as she would be executed on Saturday
Jabbari was sentenced to death in 2009 for stabbing to death a former employee of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence, Morteza Abdolali Sarbandi.
The incident – which took place two years earlier in 2007, when Jabbari was just 19-years-old – occurred when Sarbandi met the former decorator in a cafe and convinced her to visit his office to discuss a business deal.
While there Sarbandi allegedly drugged and attempted to rape Jabbari, who grabbed a pocket knife and stabbed the civil servant – fleeing the scene as he bled to death.
Jabbari’s execution was first postponed in April after a global petition to spare her life attracted 20,000 signatures.
Reyhaneh Jabbari pictured handcuffed at police headquarters in Tehran after she was arrested for the murder of a former intelligence official in 2007. Amnesty International called the investigation and trial ‘deeply flawed’
The punishment was rescheduled, but deferred once again – apparently after Jabbari had said her final goodbyes to her family, while a government car waited outside Rajai Shahr Prison, near Tehran, to transport her to the execution site.
Jabbari’s friends and relatives, including Pakravan, are a regular sight outside the prison, staging regular protests asking for the 26-year-old to be released.
The only thing I want in this universe is for Rayhaneh to be released. I have done everything I can think of,’ Pakravan said.
‘I am a mother. No mother can accept the death of her child, she added.’
There are numerous concerns over the way the case was handled by Iranian authorities.
Amnesty reports she was placed in solitary confinement for two months, where she did not have access to a lawyer or her family.
A man who killed an Iranian youth in a street fight with a knife in 2007, is brought to the gallows during his execution ceremony in the northern Iran city of Nowshahr. The mother of the victim spared his life soon after
The organisation also claims that Jabbari underwent ‘savage tortures’ to extract a confession.
A statement said: ‘The misogynic regime of the mullahs is attempting to intensify the atmosphere of terror in the society and to terrorise all women and youth who have not succumbed to the oppression and vulgarly of regime’s elements.’
MEP Gérard Deprez, the chair of Friends of a Free Iran, a pressure group in the European Parliament, earlier called on Iran to halt the execution.
He said: ‘Hassan Rouhani’s government has hanged more than 1,000 people, many of them in public squares in Iranian cities. This is the worst record by any Iranian president for the past 25 years.
‘If human rights are not improving in Iran, continued talks will only be seen as a green light for further aggression by the regime against its people as well as spreading its terror to other countries of the region.
‘It is time the west imposes sanctions on Iran’s human rights violations with no further delay.’
Revolutionary justice: Iranians watch the execution of two convicted gang rapists in 2002