No More Silence

by Julie on July 5, 2010 · 6 comments

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Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

(CNN) — A veteran Iranian human rights activist has warned that Sakineh Mohammadie Ashtiani, a mother of two, could be stoned to death at any moment under the terms of a death sentence handed down by Iranian authorities.

“Only an international campaign designed to pressure the regime in Tehran can save her life, according to Mina Ahadi, head of the International Committee Against Stoning and the Death Penalty.

“Legally it’s all over,” Ahadi said Sunday. “It’s a done deal. Sakineh can be stoned at any minute.”

“That is why we have decided to start a very broad, international public movement. Only that can help.”” read more at CNN

It is time to no longer be silent. We now have the Internet and hundreds of thousands of circles of women. It doesn’t matter if your circle is only two women, it’s a circle. And, in a circle there is power. Power to speak. Power to love. Power to make a difference. Power that can be used to make a change in how things have been.

It is time for the way things have been to be over. It is time to stop the oppression of women. We can, and we will, find the solidarity necessary to chart a new course for this new world community.

We are all related. We are interrelated. What happens to Sakineh Mohammadie Ashtiani happens to us. She is our neighbor. She is our sister. She is me. She is you.

Please do whatever you can to raise a ruckus so loud that no one will be able to say we were silent in the face of this barbaric treatment of this woman, and countless other women in the world.

Her children have pleaded with the world to help save her from this barbaric death.

Fellow blogger, Jessica Gottlieb, wrote an informative post here.

What you can do:

Tweet it.

@UN When will you intercede on behalf of #Ashtiani? http://bit.ly/bCeWGe”

Participate in TweetChat at: http://bit.ly/c5VBhA

Blog it.

Share it on Facebook.

Tell your family about her.

Tell your neighbors about her.

Tell the world about her.

Where you can write:

Below are email addresses that are starting points for public pressure that can make a big difference. You can compose your own email or use a suggested email format, like the ones below.

1. Email to Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for the Office of Human Rights: npillay@ohchr.org, with cc: to urgent-action@ohchr.org

Possible format:

Subject: Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for the Office of Human Rights,

Body: In Iran a woman stands before execution by stoning, and the threat is imminent, according to her attorney. Her name is Sakineh Mohammedie Ashtiani. Her crime is to have committed adultery, according to the public charges against her. She has already been in jail since 2005 and been lashed 99 times. Under that extreme duress, she ‘confessed’ to this ‘crime’.

To execute people by stoning is a repulsive and appalling crime against humanity. I plead with you, Navi Pillay, to appeal to the Iranian Government, and condemn this barbaric death sentence.

Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter,

Sincerely,
[your name]

2. Sample letter to the International Committee of the Red Cross:

Send to: Florian Westphal (fwestphal@icrc.org) and Dorothea Krimitsas (dkrimitsas@icrc.org)

Suggested format:

Dear Ms. Westphal and Ms. Krimitsas,

I am writing to you with an urgent request that you intervene with the authorities in the Islamic Republic of Iran, who are preparing to execute by stoning Sakine Mohammadi Ashtiani. Stoning is a barbaric form of torture and execution that should be outlawed worldwide. Multilateral organizations have thus far refused to step in. Your mandate encourages your organization to undertake the work of visiting prisoners in situations of internal violence, where the Geneva Conventions do not apply. I ask you to step in and demand a halt to these barbaric proceedings.

Sincerely,
[your name]

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Mrs.Which July 6, 2010 at 5:15 am

Is there a letter writing campaign that you know about that I can access?

wholly jeanne July 8, 2010 at 5:00 am

too often, it’s hard to tell the 21st century from the 2nd century. have been down and out this week with ear/throat infection, but i’m on this. thank you for sharing it.

Julie July 8, 2010 at 7:44 am

@Mrs.Which – yes, I’ve appended my post with email addresses to write to.
@Jeanne – you are welcome. yes, so much archaic, barbaric ugliness in the world.

Cristina July 9, 2010 at 8:36 pm

My heart and conscience has been pricked to the core. My email and letter will be written tomorrow.

Julie July 9, 2010 at 8:44 pm

Cristina – i am touched by your pierced heart.

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