We live in hope
When I can’t do anything for my clients I’d rather be executed with them’ desperate words uttered by Nasrin Sotoudeh following the execution of her client Arash Rahmanipour, a minor, in January 2010.
‘I am proud to be serving a longer sentence than the brave men and women I defended after the 2009 elections’, words Nasrin wrote to her three year old son from behind bars in Evin prison in May 2011.
What can you say about a woman whose courage and sacrifice humbles you? What can you say about a woman who forgoes an opportunity to see her children in principled objection to illegal dress code for women prisoners? What can you say about a woman who in the presence of prison guards and officials snatches a precious moment to embrace her husband with her handcuffed hands and looks into his eyes with all the love for the world to see?
What could she possibly have done wrong? What crime did she commit? What law did she break? Nasrin’s crime is that she knows the law of the land. As limiting and prohibitive as they are she tried to use them to defend the rights of her clients. She objected when time and time again the law was broken. She dared to speak, to highlight the interferences with the law. She questioned the independence of the justice system when a minor was executed for political expedience. She asked for nothing more than the true application of existing laws and observance of international obligations and commitments.
In a country where the administration of justice is unjust, where equality is unequal and where religion, gender, money, position and who you know bring you privilege it is not surprising to find a lawyer fighting for justice and equality behind bars. Yet, in the words of another unjustly incarcerated person, Majid Tavakoli, his generation will stand fast and with courage and conviction will realise their hopes and aspirations for a better future – the future is bright.
Last week on the occasion of their wedding anniversary Nasrin sent us all the bird of peace from behind bars. While expressing her love for her husband she dedicated the dove to all those who fight for peace, democracy and freedom
I echo Nasrin’s words ‘we live in the hope of a better tomorrow’, we live in hope …
Head of Human Rights - ACI
London 10 October 2011
International Campaign in support of Nasrin Sotoudeh
Nasrin Sotoudeh has a 4 year old son and an eleven year old daughter, although they are both very young and missed their mother but they appreciate their mother’s sacrifice. They have told their father, who is Nasrin’s best friend and supporter, that Momy is in prison so that no child is executed in the future!