The Execution of A Teenage Girl – Update!

In the early morning hours of a gloomy day in August of 2004, a 16 year old girl by the name of Atefeh Sahaaleh Rajabi, was executed in public. Imam Haji Rezai, the powerful head of the Islamic judiciary in the city of Neka, the same Muslim Cleric who had sentenced Atefeh to death, personally placed the noose around Atefeh’s tiny neck, before she was hoisted on a crane to her death.

And that is how this so-called man of God proudly became the judge, the jury, and the executioner of a child, whose “crimes” were only described as “acts incompatible with chastity.”

After her execution, the state-run newspaper accused Atefeh of adultery and described her as 22 years old.

Yet, Atefeh was not married – and she was just 16. The transcripts of Atefeh’s court proceedings have never been released.

A group of brave journalists entered Iran in disguise to investigate Atefeh’s death sentence after hearing rumors that she was only 16. The following video is the heart-wrenching documentary of Atefeh’s story, compiled and produced by BBC.

– Lily Mazahery

Ms. Lily Mazahery is a Iranian-American attorney, and the founder and president of the Washington, D.C. based Legal Rights Institute.

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Hooman Hedayati

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