Iran jails woman for 6 years for writing (unpublished) story on stoning

Iran jails woman for 6 years for writing (unpublished) story on stoning

Writer convicted of insulting Islam and spreading propaganda; husband sentenced to 15 years in prison

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee and husband Arash Sadeghi (Facebook photo)
Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee and husband Arash Sadeghi (Facebook photo)

An Iranian woman has been sentenced to six years in prison for writing an unpublished story about the practice of stoning in the Islamic republic, according to a report by Amnesty International.

Her husband, meanwhile, has been sentenced to 15 years in jail for various charges leveled against him after the story was found.

Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee, a writer and human rights activist, was imprisoned after authorities searched her and husband Arash Sadeghi’s home in the Iranian capital, Tehran, and found the story in 2014.

The tale written by Iraee concerns a young Iranian woman who watches a movie about stoning — “The Stoning of Soraya M,” a 2008 film based on a true story — and in her anger over the events of the film burns a Quran.

Execution by stoning is no longer common in Iran, but has still been implemented by courts from time to time in recent years as punishment for adultery.

Iraee was recently found guilty of “insulting Islamic sanctities” and “spreading propaganda against the system.” She was told to report to Iran’s notorious Evin prison.

She and Sadeghi were both initially imprisoned in 2014 after authorities discovered the story. She was held for 20 days in a detention facility, where she was not allowed to meet a lawyer.

Iraee suffered long hours of interrogation while blindfolded, during which officials told her she could be executed for her actions.

Her husband Arash Sadeghi has said he was tortured and beaten in custody. He has since been sentenced to 15 years in prison for “spreading propaganda against the system” and “gathering and colluding against national security.”

“The charges against Golrokh Ebrahimi Iraee are ludicrous,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for the Middle East and North Africa.

“She is facing years behind bars simply for writing a story, and one which was not even published — she is effectively being punished for using her imagination. Instead of imprisoning a young woman for peacefully exercising her human rights by expressing her opposition to stoning, the Iranian authorities should focus on abolishing this punishment, which amounts to torture.”

Join us!
A message from the Editor of Times of Israel
David Horovitz

The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.

We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.

Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.

Become a member of The Times of Israel Community
read more: