Endangered Iranian human rights lawyer arrives in Norway / News / The Foreigner

Endangered Iranian human rights lawyer arrives in Norway. Mohammad Mostafaei, the Iranian human rights lawyer seeking political asylum, arrived in Stavanger yesterday after being released by Turkish police. The 35-year-old was defence counsel for Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who was convicted by an Iranian court to be stoned to death for committing adultery and killing her husband. Mostafaei allegedly became a problem for the Iranian government after he actively participated in bringing Ashtiani’s case to the attention of the international community. He fled from Iran on 24 July to Turkey after authorities issued a warrant for his arrest.In jail

mohammad, mostafaei, sakineh, mohammadi, ashtiani, iran, stoning, jonas, gahr, stoere, fereshteh, halimi, evri, prison, turkey, asylum, norway



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Endangered Iranian human rights lawyer arrives in Norway

Published on Sunday, 8th August, 2010 at 21:39 under the news category, by Ramona Tancau and Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 9th August 2010 at 21:23.

Mohammad Mostafaei, the Iranian human rights lawyer seeking political asylum, arrived in Stavanger yesterday after being released by Turkish police.

Evin Prison, Teheran
Evin Prison, Teheran
Photo: 27389271/Flickr


Fled

The 35-year-old was defence counsel for Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who was convicted by an Iranian court to be stoned to death for committing adultery and killing her husband.

Mostafaei allegedly became a problem for the Iranian government after he actively participated in bringing Ashtiani’s case to the attention of the international community. He fled from Iran on 24 July to Turkey after authorities issued a warrant for his arrest.

In jail

VG reports though Mostafaei was then imprisoned in Turkey because of issues relating to his passport, authorities in Istanbul refused to comply with Iran’s subsequent extradition request. They have, however, allowed him to travel to a third party country.

On Tuesday, the defence lawyer told CNN he’d met with Norwegian officials in Ankara and applied for political asylum. This was confirmed by a Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman whilst Mostafaei was in custody in Istanbul.

“He has applied for asylum in a third country and in a day or two he travels to the country of his choice. Norway is a possibility,” he said.

Though Norway’s Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre refused to make any comment at the time, he welcomed the news of Mostafaei’s safe passage today.

“I am very pleased that human rights lawyer Mohammad Mostafaei is now safe in Norway,” he says in a press release.

Worried

Mostafaei is also concerned about his wife’s well being, knowing she was arrested after his departure from Iran.

“I am extremely worried. She is all I can think of,” he told The Times on Thursday.

33 year-old Fereshteh Halimi is being kept in isolation in Teheran’s notorious Evin prison. Inmates are routinely questioned and tortured, and the cells are especially designed to deprive prisoners from sleep.

“She was concerned and feared what might happen because of my work, but she always supported me because she thought it was important, " Mostafaei told the paper.

International human rights organizations along with the British government consider her imprisonment a gross violation of human rights and asked Iran for her immediate release.

Merciless

Meanwhile, Mostafaei’s client, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, is thankful to him for his efforts to get her a fair trial and is certain that she would not still be alive if it was not for him, The Guardian reported.

Her new lawyer fears she faces certain execution, however, but it’s not yet been decided how.

In the past few years twelve women and three men have been stoned to death in Iran.



Published on Sunday, 8th August, 2010 at 21:39 under the news category, by Ramona Tancau and Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 9th August 2010 at 21:23.

This post has the following tags: mohammad, mostafaei, sakineh, mohammadi, ashtiani, iran, stoning, jonas, gahr, stoere, fereshteh, halimi, evri, prison, turkey, asylum, norway.





  
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