Iran poised to execute pregnant woman for burning Khomeini pic

Iran: Protests against the regime continue in Azadi Square

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Iran is poised to execute a pregnant woman for burning a portrait of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Islamic Republic’s founder, reports emerging from inside the country have suggested. Shahla Abdi, an ethic Kurd in her 20s, from the northwestern province of West Azerbaijan, was arrested by the morality police in Urmia in mid-October at the height of nationwide protests triggered by the September death in custody of Mahsa Amini.

Ms Abdi is said to be facing a death sentence which could be carried out within days

A woman inmate at Urmia Central Prison told IranWire Ms Abdi had been held there for about a month, with other prisoners saying she was transferred to Tabriz Prison about three weeks ago. However, there are also claims she has been taken to the detention centre of the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence.

The woman explained: “When I saw this woman, she looked very young but weak and abused, and I realised that she was four months’ pregnant.”

Another inmate believed Ms Abdi is aged either 21 or 22 .

Ms Abdi was keep in solitary confinement in Urmia, with two officers with her constantly to prevent her talking to anyone.

A second inmate said: “She was in a very shocked state. It was obvious that she hadn’t taken a shower for a long time, and her hair was very messy. She was very scared.”

The same prisoner also described the appalling conditions inside the jail, explaining: “A woman was sick for two months, and they didn’t even give her one single pill,” she said.

More than 500 people have been killed in an Iranian government crackdown since the start of the protests, with in excess of 18,000 arrested – including pregnant women.

Zahra Nabizadeh was six months pregnant when she was detained on January 18 in the town of Mahabad, in West Azerbaijan province, Hengaw, a Norway-based group which monitors rights violations in Iran’s Kurdish regions, has reported.

Hengaw said Nabizadeh suffered a miscarriage after security forces kicked her in the stomach during her arrest.

Nabizadeh was also handed a death sentence and is now awaiting execution in prison.

At least two other pregnant protesters have been arrested recently and are currently locked up.

On one occasion last year, footage showed pictures of demonstrators setting fire to the former home of Ayatollah Khomeini, which is now a museum. has contacted the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to ask whether they are monitoring the situation.

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