The only way to save her is to increase the pressure through the Campaign


On Saturday 7 April 2014 or Farvardin 17, 1393 on the Persian calender a meeting was held in Tehran in the name of peace and reconciliation with regards to Rayhaneh’s death sentence. Everyone one around the world was hoping to hear of Rayhaneh’s imminent release.  Unfortunately, the news we have just received from Iran has shattered our hopes…

Under Islamic Law (Sharia Law) only the family of the deceased has the power to stop the execution of the accused by forgiving them. Sadly, this was not the conclusion of the April 7th negotiations which was attended by prominent Iranian artists, athletes, writers and intellectuals alike.

During the proceedings, a young man who was attending the meeting in order to sign the death sentence of the killer of his brother while trembling and crying announced that “after hearing all the attendees’ speeches he wished to forgive the killer and does not wish to have the accused executed”.

After hearing such highly emotional and humane announcement; two members of the Sarbandi family stated that they also do not agree with the execution of Rayhaneh, that they wish to discuss the matter further. As such, the family of the victim neither agreed nor disagreed with the execution at that time. In the meeting, however, it appeared that both families of the victim and the accused spoke of further review of Rayhaneh’s ambiguous case.

According to news we just received from Iran, on Tuesday April 8, 2014, Rayhaneh’s name was called on the prison loudspeaker requesting her presence to meet a visitor. Rayhaneh was paralyzed with fear as when one’s name is called on the loud speaker on a Tuesday it means the victim will be transferred to solitary to await execution on Wednesday. But instead she was met by a man from the judiciary office whose job is to “comfort” prisoners before execution. He told her that “her fate is in God’s hands and that she must accept it”.

This news shows that Rayhaneh’s life is in grave danger and we must make our protest to her execution even louder and stronger…

The issue of Rayhaneh’s execution, in reality, does not solely depend on the family of the victim but instead on a despotic and corrupt regime that ranks number one in the world for executions per capita and has functioned with impunity for 35 years. A regime that extracts confessions by the vilest forms of torture and then executes the person based on that confession. The only way to save Rayhaneh is to put strong pressure on the government of Iran who is suddenly trying to appear legitimate and “moderate” in the eyes of the world. Is hanging a woman for defending herself against a rapist “moderate”?

We invite everyone to join us in this campaign by putting heavy international pressure on the government of Iran and to show both Khamenei and Rouhani that killing Rayhaneh will have a high cost for the regime on the international stage. This campaign has grown enormously in just a few weeks and we plan to make it much larger.

Campaign to save Rayhaneh Jabbari from execution

Rayhaneh Jabbari is a 26 six year old woman who was convicted of murdering a man named Morteza in Iran who has been in prison for the last 7 years and is awaiting imminent execution[ by hanging].

Rayhaneh, an interior designer, was speaking on the phone about her work in a coffee shop, a conversation which was coincidentally overheard by Morteza who approached her for professional advice about renovating his office. They then set a date to meet at his office in order to see and discuss Morteza’s renovation project.

On the day of the meeting, Morteza picked up Rayhaneh in his car. On the way to his office, Morteza stopped at a pharmacy, purchased an item (while Rayhaneh waited in the car), got into the car again and drove to his office. After arriving at their destination, Rayhaneh realized that the place did not look like a work place at all as it was a rundown house. Inside the house, Rayhaneh saw two drinks on the table, Morteza went inside and quickly locked the door from inside, put his arms around Rayhaneh’s waist and told her that “she had no way of escaping”. A struggle soon ensued. Rayhaneh trying to defend herself stabbed Morteza in the shoulder and escaped. Morteza died from bleeding.

Lab analysis showed the drinks Morteza intended to serve to Rayhaneh contained sedatives. Regardless, Rayhaneh was arrested. There she was told by the authorities that the murder had been set up [by them] and was “politically motivated”.

Nevertheless, Rayhaneh was tortured until she confessed to the murder, after she was given the death penalty which was upheld by the Supreme Court. As a result she is to be executed at any moment.

The Campaign to Save Rayhaneh, asks that all individuals and organizations help support us in any way possible to save Rayhaneh. If you have any contacts or connections with media, human rights organizations, women’s rights advocates or government agencies, please support Rayhaneh’s campaign by writing to them.

Please help us save her life by signing this petition.

112,000 people from all over the world including China, Iran, Pakistan, Australia, USA, Canada and India have signed the petition to spare Rayhaneh’s life in the past few weeks. Millions more heard the news and have showed their support.


Nazanin Afshin-Jam
Shadi Paveh
Shabnam Assadollahi
Mina Ahadi


Letter is translated by Shadi Paveh


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