Ashraf Kolhari, a 37-year-old mother of four, has been sentenced to death by stoning for committing adultery in Iran. Kolhari was arrested five years ago and has been awaiting her sentence in prison. Recently, she received the decision that she would be executed by the end of July.
Reportedly, Kolhari had an affair after her request for a divorce from her husband was denied. According to Iran Focus, she was sentenced on two charges: she received 15 years imprisonment for participating in the murder of her husband and death by stoning for having extra-marital sex.
Under the Islamic Republic of Iran’s penal code, Kolhari must be buried up to her neck and killed by stoning for committing adultery. Though several ayatollahs have released fatwas – religious edicts – to stop deaths by stoning, Iranian women’s rights lawyer Shadi Sadr told the Adnkronos International, an Italian news agency, that fatwas are not sufficient to stop this cruel practice: “Single judges are not obliged to respect the fatwas. To stop stonings, we need a change in the law.”
According to the Women’s Forum Against Fundamentalism in Iran, there are eight other women in Iranian prisons who have been sentenced to death by stoning.