Monday, January 10, 2011
Regime's Revenge on Sotoudeh will Backfire
11 years prison sentence, 20 years ban from working as a lawyer and 20 years ban from leaving the country, was the court's sentence against Sotoudeh. The breakdown of the sentence is 1 year for propaganda against the regime, five years against their favourite charge, 'action against national security' and five years for appearing without a hejab in a video she had sent to the International Human Rights Organisation of Italy, a non-governmental organisation which had awarded her the International Award of Human Rights in 2008, because she was unable to receive the prize herself after being banned form leaving the country.
Sotoudeh's interrogators from the intelligence ministry had told her she would remain in prison for more than ten years and yesterday's sentence by Judge Pir-Abbassi was nothing other than obliging to the wishes of the intelligence ministry which now effectively runs the judiciary in Iran.
This sentence was a warning to other lawyers in Iran, who dared defend dissidents and activists. Even defending dissidents and activists is now a crime in the Islamic Republic of Iran. A regime which as described by other Iranian clerics is neither Islamic, nor a Republic nor Iranian.
Just like the Burmese government was unable to diminish the status of Aung San Suu Kyi by sentencing her to a long term prison sentence, nor will the Islamic Republic have any success in reducing Sotoudeh's status as a national hero of Iran for eternity.