Iranian child bride facing execution for killing abusive husband she married at 14

Razieh Ebrahimi has been refused a pardon by her husband's family like the one shown above

A child bride who murdered her husband in Iran after years of abuse is due to be executed.

Razieh Ebrahimi was married at 14, had a child at 15, shot her husband at 17 and is now on death row aged just 21.

Charities including Human Rights Watch are fighting to have her sentence repealed and hold it up as an example of brutal capital punishment in Iran and other countries.

International law prohibits the execution of child offenders but in Iran, girls as young as nine and boys aged 15 or older can be killed for some crimes, including murder.

Authorities arrested Ebrahimi – called “Maryam” in the local press – four years ago after she shot her husband in the head as he was sleeping and buried his body in the garden, a source told Human Rights Watch.

Imprisoned in the city of Ahvaz, she admitted guilt and said she snapped after several years of physical and verbal abuse at the hands of her husband.

Joe Stork, the deputy Middle East and North Africa director of Human Rights Watch, said the execution order should be reversed.

He added: “Every time an Iranian judge issues a death sentence for a child offender like Ebrahimi, he should remember he is flagrantly violating his legal responsibilities to administer justice fairly and equitably.”

Prison authorities reportedly attempted to carry out her execution earlier, but when she told them she was 17 when she killed her husband they returned her to her cell.

Following recent changes to Iran’s penal code, her lawyer requested a retrial from the Supreme Court on the basis that she had been under 18 and did not understand the consequences of her actions but the court refused.

In an interview with an Iranian online magazine, Ebrahimi’s lawyer, Hassan Aghakhani, said he hoped the judiciary could at the very least suspend his client’s sentence until all branches of the court applied laws on child executions uniformly.

Human Rights Watch is calling on the Iranian government to prohibit the death penalty for under-18s and impose a moratorium on all passed sentences.

Under Iranian law, murder victims’ survivors can pardon the killer but the husband’s family has refused.

In April, a woman in Iran dramatically pardoned her son's murderer at the last minute before he was hung, slapping him before the noose was removed.

Since 2009, Iran has executed at least 10 child offenders, making it the country with the world’s highest number of child executions according to Human Rights Watch.

Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Hamas authorities in Gaza have also executed juvenile offenders in the last five years.

Read more: Iranian mother stops execution of son's killer
British woman jailed in Iran for anti-government Facebook post
Iranian billionaire executed for bank fraud
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
  • Get to the point
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: IT Project Coordinator (Software Development) - Kingston

£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Project Coordinator (Software Dev...

Ashdown Group: Editor-in-chief - Financial Services - City, London

£60000 - £70000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

Ashdown Group: Junior Application Support Analyst - Fluent German Speaker

£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A global leader operating...

Ashdown Group: Accountant - London - £48,000 - 12 month FTC

£40000 - £48000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: International Acc...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power