Kobra Rahmanpour


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Amnesty International 

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Petition to save Kobra's life


Please take a few moments to help save Kobra Rahmanpour. 

The suggestions given on the front page on how to help Malak Ghorbany can be applied to Kobra as well.

Again an Iranian woman is in risk of imminent execution.

25 year old Kobra Rahmanpour has been sentenced to death by hanging for killing her mother-in-law. Her death sentence (qisas-e-nafs) was issued on 1 January 2002 and confirmed by the Supreme Court of Iran on 22 August 2002. She was convicted of “intentional murder” (qatl-e amd), despite lack of any evidence that she has killed her mother-in-law, Ms. Farokhshoa Sabet, with any deliberate intention or premeditation. In fact, what the evidence showed was only a spurious act of self-defense gone irrationally out of control.  Given the history of Ms. Rahmanpour’s previous abuse by the victim, her severe emotional stress at the time of the incident, and the victim’s provocation by first attacking her with a knife, no other ordinary person could have acted rationally under those circumstances either.

Ms. Kobra Rahmanpour’s trial and appeal too were fraught with due process violations, including

1) lack of defense counsel until the end of the “investigation stage” and inadequate opportunity to prepare a defense thereafter,

2) arbitrary arrest merely on the basis of the victim’s son’s request,

3) fourteen-month-long mandatory pre-trial detention,

4) lack of the right to presumption of innocence and to not self-incriminate,

5) a prolonged trial that was neither public nor had even an appearance of independence and impartiality,

6) an inadequate appeal that was conducted secretively and without a hearing,

7) and finally, like all qisas-e-nafs convicts, lack of the right to seek clemency from the state.

According to a report in the Islamic regime-run news agency FARS, the lawyer for Kobra Rahmanpour, Abdul-Samad Khoram-Shahi, announced on September 2, 2006, that Tehran's criminal enforcement unit of the public prosecutor's office has given Rahmanpour one month to obtain an "order of recompense" from the parents of the deceased; if she does not succeed in obtaining such document during this period, the order of her execution will be carried out. In other words, she may be executed in the beginning of October.

The following is a letter written by Kobra

Rahmanpour's father, Abolfazl:


My name is Abolfazl Rahmanpour, and I am Kobra Rahmanpour's father.  I am writing to ask you to voice your objection to the unjust death sentence of my daughter.

My little girl was forced to marry a man who was 43 years her senior.  Kobra was a star student and had dreams of going to college.  However, extreme poverty forced her to forego all of her dreams and goals.

Before getting married, Kobra had a difficult life.  After marriage, not only was she unable to find peace or happiness, but she was subjected to a life that was even more brutal.  The extent of problems and abuse that Kobra endured in a household where she was first a maid and then a bride, forced a kind girl such as Kobra to become involved in a physical altercation, during which she had no choice but to defend herself, an act that led to  the death of her abuser.

Since then, Kobra has spent the best years of her teenage and young life in jail on death row.  She has suffered greatly and is entirely broken.  She should not face any more torture and cruelty.  She should not feel the executioner's rope around her neck, and I should not be a witness to her pale, lifeless body, forever asking myself how could I have let this happen or what should I have done differently so that my young child would not have had to face such a brutal life and such a horrifying death?

Kobra, herself, has stated that she wishes to live; she is terrified of execution, of public hanging, and of the cranes that will elevate her to her death.  She wants to go to college and get an education.  Kobra is an extremely kind   girl, a fact to which even her fellow prisoners attest.  She should be released from prison to start a new and normal life.

Our only hope for saving Kobra's life remains in YOUR objections to her unjust sentence.  The only way to save Kobra's life is the collective voices of all persons who find her punishment unfair and inhumane, those who believe in the basic rights of all humans, those who oppose the death penalty, and various international human rights organizations.

I ask you to put yourself in my position and that of Kobra's mother for even one moment to understand the horror and the pain with which we deal on a daily basis.  I am willing to be executed in Kobra's place if that would ensure her freedom.  All my life, I have worked hard, from morning to night, and have lived a respectable and honest life;  I can not help but wonder how or why this fate has befallen upon me and my family.  If Kobra is executed, her mother and I will have nothing left in our lives.  PLEASE HELP US.

Please lend your support to my family, to my handicapped child who constantly asks for her sister, Kobra, and to the rest of Kobra's relatives and loved ones who are horrified by the prospect of the execution our kind and beautiful child, our beloved Kobra.  We ask that you sign the petition to save Kobra?s life, even though we realize that we do not have much time left.  Yet, during these last hours, we plead with you to lend us a helping hand:  By signing this petition, please voice YOUR objection to Kobra?s unjust punishment and support our efforts to save her life.


Abolfazl Rahmanpour