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Iran Airs Alleged 'Confession' of Woman Once Sentenced to Stoning


"we would condemn this in the strongest terms"

Iranian TV has aired the alleged confession of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, the women accused of being unfaithful to her husband and then murdering him, and who was initially set to be stoned -- now possibly hanged -- for the alleged crimes.

The Iranian government created the TV special, which includes a re-enactment of the supposed incident, to quell dissenters who think Ashtiani is innocent. But before the special even hit the airwaves it had already drawn harsh criticism. For example, Amnesty International criticized the broadcast saying it violates international standards for a fair trial by having Ashtiani implicate herself.

"If the authorities are seeking to use this 'confession' to try to construct a new case against her, for a crime that she's already been tried and sentenced for, we would condemn this in the strongest terms," Philip Luther, the deputy director of Amnesty's Middle East and North Africa program, said in a statement, and reported by Al Jazeera.

Ashtiani has already received 99 lashes for having "illicit relationships" with two men after her husband's death.

Earlier this week, pictures and footage of Ashtiani leaked prompting many outlets to report that she had been freed. Those reports were later denied by the Iranian government, which then revealed its plans for the taped confession and re-enactment.

Both Ashtiani's son and lawyer, who are fighting for her release and maintain her innocence, have been arrested.

The entire program can be viewed below (WARNING: Contains graphic images):

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