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MEPs declare support for Sakineh

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MEPs declare support for Sakineh

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International condemnation of the death sentence imposed on Iranian Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani is mounting – from the Vatican to the European Parliament.

MEPs have given their unanimous support to the young woman, sentenced to death by stoning for alleged adultery.

European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek said: “We appeal to the Iranian authorities to review this case in a fair way, and we reiterate the fact that the European Parliament is against the death penalty.”

France has also condemned the sentence, and one of its ministers says he is willing to go to Iran himself to help save the young woman.

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said: “This is a punishment, an act that is impossible to even imagine. It is the height of barbarity and a return to the Middle Ages. This is a personal cause as well. If need be, I will go to Tehran myself.”

Amid growing protest over reports the sentence could be carried out this week, the Italian foreign minister says his officials have been told that no decision has yet been taken by the Iranian authorities.