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February 1, 2006

Iranian religious courts often release human traffickers

Iran: Clerical courts set free women traffickers.
Wednesday, 28 December 2005

The state-run daily Iran reported that a man involved in human trafficking of young Iranian girls, each sold in Arab countries for over 50 million rials (US$4,600), received a prison term of three to five months. An appeals court, however, overturned the ruling and released the smuggler and ordered him to pay a fine of just US$275.

The Iranian regime has executed minors on much lesser charges and continues to issue stoning to death verdicts. But the regime’s judiciary deals quite leniently with networks of human traffickers of young Iranian girls and women, since the ring leaders of such networks are mostly linked to the ruling mullahs who profit from the illicit trade.

On rare occasions when one of these ring leaders is arrested, they eventually walk free after paying less than 6% of what they earn from selling a single woman. Iranian state-run newspapers have reported that hundreds of girls and women are smuggled and sold in Persian Gulf states and Pakistan every month.

Ms. Sarvnaz Chitsaz, Chair of the Women’s Committee of the National Resistance Council of Iran, called on all women’s rights and human rights organizations, and also all relevant international bodies in the United Nations, Council of Europe, European Union, Organization of Islamic Conference, and the Arab League to condemn the trafficking of young Iranian girls by Iran's fundamentalist regime. She demanded urgent regional and international action to stop the continued victimization of Iranian girls and women.

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
December 28, 2005
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