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Long Jail Term For Iran Rights Defender Confirmed, Then Denied

Iranian human rights defender, Nasrin Sotoudeh. File photo

Imprisoned Iranian human rights lawyer and defender Nasrin Sotoudeh‘s 33-year jail sentence is final, and she must serve 12 years, the official IRNA news agency reported.

However, hours later, ISNA news agency quoted the spokesperson of Iran's Judiciary as saying that the sentencing is still not final and he left room for an appeal.

Sotoudeh who was arrested in mid-2018, was sentenced in early March to 33 years in prison and 148 lashes. She was subjected to two trials that Amnesty International has called “grossly unfair”.

The charges brought against her were mainly related to her work defending opponents of forced hijab and her opposition to the death penalty, but the government added national security related accusations to reach the heavy sentence.

The European Parliament, France, the United States and international rights organizations have all voiced support for Sotoudeh and have demanded here immediate release.

It was reported April 10 that in a telephone call between the Iranian president Hassan Rouhani and Emmanuel Macron, the French president asked for Sotoudeh's release.

IRNA also says that prison authorities found a pair of scissors in her belongings and banned her from prison visits for three weeks.