The Tehran Criminal Court sentenced a man and woman to lashes on adultery charges. According to state-run media, the husband of the accused woman identified by her first name as Khoshchehreh filed a complaint against his wife one year ago.
Khoshchehreh’s husband suspected her of having extramarital relations with one of his relatives, and the case was taken to court. Both Khoshchehreh and the man identified by his first name as Salar denied the charges, and said they were just friends. However, upon the insistence of Khoshchehreh’s husband, her smartphone was also examined in court and Salar and Khoshchehreh were incriminated because of the messages and pictures on the smartphone.
Salar and Khoshchehreh were sentenced to lashes. In addition to this, Khoshchehreh was sentenced to two years of forced labor six hours a day, three days a week in a nursing home for “betrayal”. The accused man was also sentenced to two years of exile to a city outside of Tehran.
This is not an isolated case. The Iranian regime uses lashes as punishment for several “offences”.
In January, Tehran courts sentenced two men and one woman to 99 lashes for having extramarital relationships.
In another case on January 9, a man identified as Ramin was sentenced to 99 lashes for having a relationship with a girl out of wedlock in Tehran. Ramin’s sentence was also upheld by the Supreme Court and was issued for implementation.
Before that, a January 1 state-run media report said that two Iranians in the northern province of Gilan were sentenced to public flogging for animal abuse.
In late December 2020, a 29-year-old man was lashed 79 times in public in Qazvin, northwestern Iran. The unidentified man was sentenced to public flogging by the Judiciary for “several counts of troublemaking and harming security”.
Iran’s use of degrading punishments and torture
The Iranian regime is one of the few states that still uses degrading punishments, even though all international civil and political rights conventions have prohibited the use of inhumane punishments such as execution and flogging.
In July 2018, following the public flogging of another man in Khorasan Razavi Province, Amnesty International condemned the cruel punishment in a statement.
“The use of cruel and inhuman punishments such as flogging, amputation and blinding are an appalling assault on human dignity and violate the absolute prohibition on torture and other degrading treatment or punishment under international law,” Amnesty’s Philip Luther said.
“As a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Iran is legally obliged to forbid torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment. It’s simply unacceptable that the Iranian authorities continue to allow such punishments and to justify them in the name of protecting religious morals.” More than 100 “offenses” are punishable by flogging under Iranian law. The offenses include theft, assault, vandalism, defamation, extramarital relationships and fraud. They also cover acts that should not be criminalized, such as adultery, intimate relationships between unmarried men and women, “breach of public morals” and consensual same-sex sexual relations.