Iran Human RightsUS condemns stoning executions in Iran

US condemns stoning executions in Iran

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ImageAFP: The United States on Friday joined international condemnation of the stoning death of two men in Iran for adultery, demanding an end to such "cruel and unusual punishment" there.

ImageWASHINGTON (AFP) — The United States on Friday joined international condemnation of the stoning death of two men in Iran for adultery, demanding an end to such "cruel and unusual punishment" there.

"The United States joins the international community in expressing concern about the inhumane practice of stoning in the Islamic Republic of Iran," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said in a statement.

Iran's judiciary on Tuesday confirmed that two men had been stoned to death for adultery in the northeastern city of Mashhad but that a third had struggled from the stoning hole and escaped alive.

"This cruel and unusual punishment is an inhumane practice that does not meet the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Iran has ratified," McCormack added.

"We call on Iran not only to permanently abolish the practice of stoning, but to offer all defendants fair and transparent trials."

Earlier in the week, the European Union also condemned the stoning deaths.

Under Iran's Islamic law, adultery is still theoretically punishable by stoning, where members of the public hurl stones at a convict buried up to his waist. A woman is buried up to her shoulders.

The convict is spared if he can free himself.

Despite a 2002 directive by judiciary chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi imposing a moratorium on such executions, five Iranians have reportedly been stoned to death in the past four years.

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