Kurdish girl tortured and sentenced to life in Prison


Zeinab Jalalian

The Iranian Supreme Court has reduced Zeinab Jalalian’s death sentence to life in prison. She was arrested in 2008 in association with an outlawed rebel group PJAK, which she later denied. Her trial was speedy, and legal procedures were not followed in ensuring that she had appropriate representation while detained. When she was assigned a legal representative, they were denied access on several occasions while she was held in prison.

The judge told her “You are a God’s enemy and you have to be hanged very soon.” The 29-year-old will now spend the rest of her life in prison on charges that are both questionable and undeserving of life in prison. The court ruled that she had waged enmity against God, and had been creating pamphlets in support of the rebel group.

In 2009, she wrote:

“I am a 27-year-old Kurdish girl who has been sentenced to death by the Supreme Court of the Islamic Revolutionary Courts. At this time I am ill due to severe torture. I have not been allowed a lawyer, and I was sentenced to death in less than a few minutes. They did not even allow me to defend myself. They told me ‘Because you are an enemy of God, you are not entitled to defend yourself’.”