Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Get To Work

Tonight, you've a chance to save a woman's life merely by wiggling your fingers about on a keyboard. An Iranian friend in Paris emails to say that he has received word that the execution of Ms. Mandana Nik-khou Monfared, 25, called "imminent" Amnesty on February 3, is now truly drawing near.

The word comes from among Iranian exiles in contact with Amnesty, who are asking concerned individuals to write to the Iranian authorities, asking for clemency. They say the Supreme Court has upheld her death sentence for the murder of her fiancé — barring a pardon, this can only be commuted if the victim's kin waive their right to retribution and accept blood money.

Amnesty also reports that last year, Mandana retracted the confession she reportedly gave police while in custody and insisted she was innocent, stating that it was her husband (whom she planned to leave for Masoud Khazi, the victim) who committed the crime. This January, Mandana's nine year-old son wrote an open letter to Ayatollah Shahrudi, head of Iran's judiciary, saying "We do not have a father and only have our mother. We ask you to let her come home to us... Our mother is innocent."

Only the French-language "urgent action" alert gives the addresses of those persons to whom pleas for Mandana's life should be addressed. They are

Judicial Authority:
His Excellency Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi
Ministry of Justice, Park-e Shahr
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Telegrams: Head of Judiciary, Ministry of Justice, Tehran, Iran
Fax: +98 21 879 6671 (send messages, "care of Director of International Affairs, Judiciary")
Term of address: Your Excellency
Spritual Guide of the Islamic Republic of Iran:
His Excellency Ayatollah Sayed Ali Khamenei
The Presidency, Palestine Avenue
Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Telegrams: Leader of the Islamic Republic, Tehran, Iran
(In the subject field, write "To the attention of His Excellency, Ayatollah al Udhma Khamenei, Qom")
Term of Address: Your Excellency,
President of the Islamic Republic of Iran
His Excellency Hojjatoleslam val Moslemin Sayed Mohammad Khatami
The Presidency, Palestine Avenue
Azerbaijan Intersection
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
(please resend the message if it bounces)
Term of Address: Your Excellency
Send copies to:
Mr Mohammad Hassan Zia'i-Far
Secretary, Islamic Human Rights Commission
PO Box 13165-137
Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran
Fax: +98 21 204 0541

and to the Iranian diplomatic representatives in your country.

For more information, please also see this matter, which may also require immediate action, though Amnesty's French language alert writes "after 23 February 2004, please check with your section about whether intervention is still necessary. Thank you."

They say each letter genuinely helps. Please write.

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