Amnesty blasts Press TV report on Ashtiani

Dec. 10, 2010 at 2:43 PM
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LONDON, Dec. 10 (UPI) -- Organizing a televised confession during the case of an Iranian woman accused of killing her husband is a mockery of justice, Amnesty International complained.

Amnesty said a production team from state-funded broadcaster Press TV was sent to retrieve Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani and her son Sajjad Qaderzadeh from prison and take them to their home to produce a "visual recount" of an alleged murder scene for a "documentary."

Ashtiani was convicted in 2006 of having an affair with two men after the death of her husband. She confessed on state-run television in August to adultery and murder but her lawyers said the confession was coerced.

Her execution was suspended in July amid an international furor over Iran's human rights record.

Amnesty blasted the Press TV production, which is expected to air Friday, as a mockery to the justice system.

"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," said Philip Luther, deputy director of the Middle East and North Africa program at Amnesty International, in a statement.

Mohammed Javad Larijani, the secretary-general of Iran's human rights council, told Press TV in November that the execution orders could be lifted. She was originally sentenced to death by stoning.

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