Iran: Death By Stoning A ‘Wise Measure’

Adnkronos International, July 19, 2007

Iran’s chief prosecutor Ghorban Ali Dori Najafabad has defended the death penalty by stoning describing it as a “wise measure”.

“Death by stoning and all the measures contained in the Sharia (Islamic law) are wise measures’ he said in speech delivered Monday in Zanjan, a town located some 200 kilometres west of the capital Tehran.

“We need to distinguish between the law of bloodmoney and the law of executions carried out after the death sentence has been passed. The first is a right the Sharia recognises to the victims, while the second is a law wanted by men”, Najafabad said.

The issue of death by stoning has recently made headlines again in Iran after the practice was used to execute a man in Iran’s Takestan region. The penalty was carried out on the order of a local judge acting against the advice of Iran’s chief judicial authority official Seyyed Mahmoud Shahroudi.

“Ayatollah Shahroudi, is not against death by stoning, but sometimes he doesn’t agree with how this measure is applied”, the head of Iran’s state appointed Human Rights Commission Mohammad Javad Larijani said.

“No one can be against stoning by death because this form of punishment is contained in the Sharia,” said Larijani, adding that he believed the practice did not run contrary to international human right accords signed by Iran.

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