A woman in Iran has been sentenced to death by the Iranian court for adultery, the state media reported. The woman's husband contacted the police in 2022, claiming he saw through surveillance cameras that she had relations with other men.
The woman worked as a trainer at an all-women's gym. Under Iranian law, the woman can appeal the sentence, as the court sometimes reduces death penalties to lighter punishments upon appeal.
The Iranian law states that crimes punishable by the death penalty include adultery, sodomy, murder, rape, armed robbery, kidnapping and drug trafficking.
Increasing rate of death penalties
According to Iran Human Rights, at least 610 executions have taken place in 2023, out of which, 15 were executions of women. In the first 20 days of May alone, 106 executions were performed in Iran, deeming it the "bloodiest month" in more than five years. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that at least 419 people received capital punishment in the first seven months of this year, an increase of 30% from the same period last year.
There was a 75% increase in executions that took place in 2022 as compared to the previous year. Massive protests broke out globally last year after the killing of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini for allegedly donning a loose hijab, which is against the Iranian Islamic dress code. The rallies were cracked down by the Iranian government and protestors were directly targeted with live ammunition, killing over 537 protestors, seven men were executed and thousands including women, journalists, lawyers, and minority people were detained.
Guterres said that in all seven executions, access to adequate legal representation was frequently denied, while they were reportedly tortured and coerced to confess. He also said that 239 people were reportedly put to death in the first seven months of this year for drug-related offences, a 98% increase from the same period in 2022.
Among many recommendations, the secretary-general urged Iran to immediately halt all executions, abolish the death penalty and release all people detained for exercising their rights to freedom of opinion and expression, association and peaceful assembly.
It was reported earlier this year that over 20,000 detained protestors were pardoned by the Iran government but the UN secretary-general said that some of the pardoned protestors then received summonses on new charges or were rearrested. The protestors were subjected to excessive use of force, psychological abuse, and sexual violence in detention.
Suggested Reading: Five Recent Women-Led Protests That Changed the World