The European Union expressed its deepest regret over the execution of the young Iranian woman Rehanna Jabbari and sent its “deepest condolences to Jabbari’s family especially her mother”. The EU called on Iran to suspend all executions.
Catherine Ashton, the EU High Representative of the Union of Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said in a press statement released on Tuesday, “The European Union deeply regrets the Iranian Judiciary’s lack of forgiveness in their trial process despite Ms Jabbari’s insistence that she was merely defending herself in the wake of a sexual assault”.
The statement went on to express the EU’s, “Sense of concern over the increasing number of executions in Iran despite criticism from the international community and the debate as to whether or not execution is a fair punishment to begin with”.
The statement also, “Calls on the Iranian authorities to suspend all executions and to consider banning the death penalty”.
The US Department of State also condemned the Iranian authorities’ decision to use the death penalty in Rehanna Jabbari’s case.
The EU’s statement went on to explain that Rehanna Jabbari killed Dr Morteza Serbandi (aged 26) after he tried to rape her and expressed its growing sense of concern of the general direction of court trials in Iran.
The US Department of State emphasised that the Iranian judiciary carried out the death penalty against Ms Jabbari despite the international community’s objection to the ruling, as they question whether or not Iran was carrying out a fair trial.
The Iranian Revolutionary Court sentenced Ms Jabbari to death a few days ago after she had been held captive in prison for killing Iranian doctor and former Iranian intelligence employee, Moerteza Serbandi seven years ago.
Rehanna Jabbari admitted to her crime by saying that she did kill Serbandi out of self-defence after he tried to rape her.
The court ruled Serbandi’s murder as a pre-meditated attack based on an email found in Jabbari’s inbox where she wrote, “I will kill him tomorrow”, in reference to the doctor. The scene of the crime was allegedly open to the public.
It is important to note that Jabbari’s case sparked an international outcry from both women’s rights and international human rights organisations.