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Mehrangiz Kar’s Views In Commemoration of the International Human Rights Day

The universal principles of human rights in Muslim societies have encountered serious obstacles that have been created by Islamic scholars’ (foghaha) different interpretations of Islam. In Islamic societies, the political and social power of the conservative and fundamentalist Islamic scholars (foghaha) is still more than of those scholars who are more moderate and modern to the point that even the ruling governments could not overcome the power and authority of the fundamental foghaha…

As Long As the Law Permits Stoning So Will the Judges

“Haj Agha, don’t you think this cruel and inhumane law of stoning should be changed?”
The Haji bit his lips so hard they turned bright red. Then he gave me a look of compassion and pity and thus made me realize that not only I am “the weak” and “half witted” sex, but also stupid and poorly learned. Since he was by nature a patient person, he did not lose his temper and said calmly:
“My sister, don’t you utter this statement somewhere else! Stoning is a verdict set by God. The earthly human cannot change a verdict set by God.”

Relationship of Obedience and Murder

my wife was 30 years younger than me, and for 14 years she was no obedient to me. At the night of the incident we had a confrontation and I was carrying a rod, which I had brought from the gym. It suddenly fell off my hands and hit her in the head.’ The judge asked the defendant, ‘if the rod fell from your hands, then why did it hit your wife 3 times?’ The defendant responded, ‘I just struck once, I don’t know why she was hit in the head 3 times. She was not obedient to me for 14 years. I did not intend to kill her. I just wanted to discipline her so that she would be obidient.

A New Women’s Movement Paradigm in Iran

Iranian women are using new methods to confront discrimination and violence. In the course of their past struggles, they have learned that a society with deeply entrenched anti-women beliefs does not change quickly. They have learned that they must take small steps, that they must not try to push every struggle towards achieving a specific aim, a “total war.” Now, with these lessons, the women’s rights movement in Iran is slowly coming together as a coherent whole and realizing its vast potential.

A letter about Stoning to Death

Azadeh Pourzand: A few weeks ago my mother, Mehrangiz Kar, wrote an article about stoning to death in Iran. She received many different feedbacks for her article that was published in Farsi. Among those responses we found an astonishing letter from an anonymous person whose mother was stoned to death twenty six years ago. Since the strength of the words of this letter paralyzed my body and mind for a few minutes, I decided to quickly translate the text. According to Article 83 of the Islamic Penal Code of Iran, stoning to death has been declared a permissible punishment for a few different types of adultery…

The custom and method of breaking the silence is what he taught me

A memory from my childhood: In the outskirts of my hometown in the south of Iran, the girls were and still are beheaded because of tribal and family customs. Sometimes, the criminal male members of the family, after wiping the stain of disgrace from their family’s reputation in their wicked way way, would place the cut off head behind their door at night to be viewed by everyone in the morning and thus prove to all the extent and stretch of their zeal and fanaticism. Girl-killing was the existing and exciting news in our town. The twilight was colored with the blood of the innocent, native girls and the news would circulate mouth to mouth to be a warning to all children who are born female and were supposed to, as soon as they reach the age of nine, act like mature, adult females, that they should be aware of their situation and not do a single wrong act…

The Snow Ball is Now Rolling

Not too long ago Mr. Mohammad Ali Abtahi, the legal aide to former president Mohammad Khatami between 1997 and 2005 announced: After the presidential elections of 2001 which took Mr. Khatami to the presidential house for his second term, a messenger informed the president that one of the senior clerics from Qom had a message for the chief executive. I went to the cleric. I was told to inform the president that if a woman was included in the president’s cabinet, he would issue a fatwa (religious decree) that paying taxes to the government would be a religious sin…

An Interview with Mehrangiz Kar

Mehrangiz Kar is among Iran’s most prominent human rights lawyers and the recipient of a number of international rights awards. A writer and essayist who has been widely published on human rights and women’s issues in Iran, Kar has been persecuted and imprisoned by authorities because of her work. She currently lives and conducts research in the United States. Kar recently visited RFE/RL headquarters in Prague, where she told RFE/RL that women cannot achieve equal rights under Iran’s current establishment. She also talked about authorities’ June 12 suppression of a women’s rights protest in the capital, Tehran, and legal obstacles to gender equality. She spoke to RFE/RL correspondent Golnaz Esfandiari.

Support for Iranian women’s demonstration by International organizations

We, the undersigned, would like to express our support for Iranian women in their continued struggle to gain equal rights under the civil and penal codes of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Specifically, we support Iranian women in their peaceful protest scheduled for June 12, 2006 demanding the end to all forms of legal discrimination and changes to the following laws…

Iranian Government’s International Commitments Regarding Equality of the rights of Men and Women

As a member of the United Nations, the Iranian government is obliged to follow rules an regulations created based on the international human rights law. The Iranian government has also signed important human rights treaties (documents?) that are listed below, adding to her duties as a member of the UN.
1. The Iranian government has arrived at a positive vote for the ratified 1948 human rights declaration, approving the contents of the human rights legislation. Therefore, the Iranian government has accepted the human rights law as interpreted by the declaration and the treaty…