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Young Iranian woman dies after self-immolating in protest to unfair court verdict

Sahar Khodayari
Sahar Khodayari

Reporting by PMOI/MEK

Iran September 11, 2019—On Monday, Sahar Khodayari, a young Iranian woman who had set herself on fire in front of a court in Tehran, died in the hospital. Khodayari had been arrested in 2018 for entering a sports stadium. Under the outdated laws of Iran's mullahs, women are banned from entering sports stadiums. Khodayari, 29, a big fan of football, had tried to enter the Azadi stadium by posing as a man, where she was spotted and arrested by security forces.

After her arrest, Khodayari was transferred to the notorious Qarchak Prison in Varamin and was later released on bail. During her stay in prison, she had also been deprived of family visits. On September 2, she went to court to follow up on her case, and she was told that she had been sentenced to six months in prison. She had also asked Iranian regime authorities to return her mobile phone but was told that the judge was on vacation and she would have to come later.

Khodayari set herself on fire in front of the court in protest to the unjust treatment and verdict. On September 9, Khodayari died in the Motahari hospital with 90 percent burns on her body. Khodayari's tragic demise drew worldwide condemnation from sports federations, sports clubs, and athletes.

The spokesperson for the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI/MEK) underlined the need to "overthrow the mullahs' regime," whose fundamentalist laws are the source of miseries for the women of Iran.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), said, "The tragic death of a young woman who self-immolated to protest against the mullahs' suppression, discrimination and deprivation of women while heartbreaking to all Iranians, only adds to the resolve of the women and men in Iran to overthrow this religious tyranny and establish freedom."



In a statement, the NCRI's Women's Committee extended its sympathies and condolences to the families and friends of Khodayari and underlined the need for all international organizations defending women’s and human rights to condemn the medieval clerical regime’s misogynous policies and its crimes against Iranian women and young girls. "Silence and inaction vis-à-vis these atrocities only emboldens the mullahs to continue to perpetrate them," the NCRI warned.