Here’s Why The World’s Talking About #ReyhanehJabbari This Morning…

Reyhaneh Jabbari was executed on Saturday for killing a man who 'tried to rape her'


by Stevie Martin |
Published on

Reyhaneh Jabbari was sentenced to death in 2009 after a flawed investigation in to the murder of a man she claims tried to sexually abuse her. Arrested for the murder of Morteza Abdolali Sarbandi, a former employee of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence, in 2007, 26-year-old Reyhaneh was due to be hanged on September 30, but had her sentence postponed. She was executed over the weekend, despite human rights groups such as Amnesty International lobbying for her release.

'The death penalty is a despicable punishment that is both cruel and inhumane. Applying such a punishment in any circumstances is an affront to justice, but doing so after a flawed trial that leaves huge questions hanging over the case only makes it more tragic,' said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Amnesty's deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa programme.

Reyhaneh, a young interior designer, claimed that she stabbed the man in the back after he tried to sexually abuse her, but there was another man in the building who killed him. Her side of the story wsa never fully investigated, she was held for two months in solitary confinement and sentenced to die.

Her final letter, addressed to her mother, was released. 'You taught me that one comes to this world to gain an experience and learn a lesson and with each birth a responsibility is put on one’s shoulder. I learned that sometimes one has to fight,' she writes. 'This country that you planted its love in me never wanted me and no one supported me when under the blows of the interrogator I was crying out and I was hearing the most vulgar terms. When I shed the last sign of beauty from myself by shaving my hair I was rewarded: 11 days in solitary.'

She goes on to ask her mother to arrange the terms of her will, and that her organs be given to someone who needs them: 'Beg so that it is arranged that as soon as I am hanged my heart, kidney, eye, bones and anything that can be transplanted be taken away from my body and given to someone who needs them as a gift. I don’t want the recipient know my name, buy me a bouquet, or even pray for me.'

Buried yesterday under tight security measures, the Iranian government feared unrest. But the 300 security guards and intelligence agents employed to supervise the ceremony ensured that it didn't turn into a protest against the regime.

Understandably, the world has reacted with horror at the news of her death - a Facebook page that was set up to save her has posted a message simply reading 'Rest in Peace' and many have taken to the internet to express their sadness.

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Follow Stevie on Twitter: @5tevieM

This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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