Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians - Nowhere to Run? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Iraq's Christians - Nowhere to Run?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Towards a "Third Intifada"?

Read more

FOCUS

What solutions for California's overcrowded prisons?

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Gaza conflict: Palestinians mark sombre Eid

Read more

WEB NEWS

Celebrities in the Israel-Gaza crossfire

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Israeli strike takes out Gaza power station

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

French newspaper apologises for Sarkozy story

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Last-ditch talks aim to avert Argentina default

Read more

  • Israel says it is 'days' from completing Gaza tunnel hunt

    Read more

  • Scores feared dead in India landslide

    Read more

  • Russia defiant as US, EU unveil 'phase three' sanctions

    Read more

  • Argentina fails to reach deal with holdout creditors

    Read more

  • Liberia shuts all schools as Ebola virus spreads

    Read more

  • US House votes to sue Obama for over-reaching his powers

    Read more

  • Suspect in Jewish Museum attack charged with 'terrorist' murder

    Read more

  • Women should not laugh in public, Turkey's deputy PM says

    Read more

  • Fourth female suicide bomber targets Nigerian city

    Read more

  • US rebounds to 4% growth in second quarter

    Read more

  • Video: Coping with rocket attacks in Israel’s Sderot

    Read more

  • Rats on the rampage at Louvre museum gardens

    Read more

  • France evacuates nationals, closes embassy in Libya

    Read more

  • 'Compelling' signs Kosovo leaders trafficked organs, prosecutor says

    Read more

  • Graphic: Ebola spreads across West Africa

    Read more

  • Video: How tourism is helping Rwanda’s gorillas, ex-poachers

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Vatican lobbies Tehran over woman who faces stoning

Video by Carlotta Ranieri , Yuka ROYER

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-01-02

The Vatican has said that it is in contact with Tehran concerning Sakineh Ashtiani, the woman who faces stoning for adultery charges, in an attempt to save her life.

AP - The Vatican on Sunday raised the possibility of using behind-the-scenes diplomacy to try to spare the life of an Iranian widow sentenced to be stoned for adultery.

In its first public statement on the case, which has attracted worldwide attention, the Vatican also decried stoning as a particularly “brutal” form of capital punishment.
 
Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi said the Catholic church opposes the death penalty in general.
 
Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani was convicted in 2006 of adultery. In July, Iranian authorities said they would not carry out the stoning sentence for the time being, but the mother of two could still face execution by hanging for adultery and other offenses.
 
Her son, Sajad, told the Italian news agency Adnkronos that he was appealing to Pope Benedict XVI and to Italy to work to stop the execution.
 
Lombardi told The Associated Press that no formal appeal had reached the Vatican, but hinted that Vatican’s diplomacy might be employed to try to save Ashtiani.
 
Lombardi said in a statement that the Holy See “is following the case with attention and interest.”
 
“When the Holy See is asked, in an appropriate way, to intervene in humanitarian issues with the authorities of other countries, as it has happened many times in the past, it does so not in a public way, but through its own diplomatic channels,” Lombardi said in a statement.
 
In one of the late Pope John Paul II’s encyclicals in 1995, the pontiff laid out the Catholic Church’s stance against capital punishment.
 
Meanwhile, Italy’s foreign minister, Franco Frattini, told the ANSA news agency that while Italy respects Iranian sovereignty and isn’t in any way interfering, “a gesture of clemency from Iran is the only thing that can save her.”

 

Date created : 2010-09-05

  • IRAN

    Woman sentenced to stoning now to be lashed as well, says son

    Read more

  • IRAN

    French cities rally in support of Iranian sentenced to stoning

    Read more

  • IRAN

    TV confession of woman sentenced to stoning 'a fake'

    Read more

COMMENT(S)