Iran's media denies reports of 'stoning to death' woman's release

Posted By: Anita Nair
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Tehran (Iran), Dec 10(ANI): Iran's media has denied reports that Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, the Iranian woman who was earlier sentenced to death by stoning for alleged adultery charges, had been released.

Earlier, on Thursday, government-owned media outlets had released several photographs of Ashtiani, whose case has sparked a massive international outcry, and her son, Sajad, at their home in Osku.

The photos showed the pair standing in the courtyard and chatting.

However, government-owned Press TV has now released a statement saying that Ashtiani had been taken home to film a special in which she would confess to murdering her husband and show the scene of the crime for a TV programme.

"Contrary to a vast publicity campaign by Western media that confessed murderer Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani has been released, a team of broadcast production team with the Iran-based Press TV has arranged with Iran's judicial authorities to follow Ashtiani to her house to produce a visual recount of the crime at the murder scene," the Globe and Mail quoted the statement, as saying.

Meanwhile, Ahmad Fatemi of the International Committee Against Stoning said that the reports appear confusing, as the Iranian officials were not confirming it.

"What we hear is still very contradictory, even coming from state media," Fatemi said.

"We are trying to get to the bottom of this," he added.

Ashtiani, a mother of two, was originally convicted in May 2006 after being found guilty of having had an "illicit relationship" with two men following the death of her husband and reportedly received 99 lashes in front of her son.

Later that year, as a result of information that surfaced during the trial of a man accused of murdering her husband, her adultery case was re-opened.

Despite retracting a confession she said she had made under duress in August, Ashtiani was convicted of adultery and sentenced to death by stoning.

The Iranian government also claims that she had a hand in the murder of her husband. (ANI)

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