April 11, 2019
(The portrait of Nasrin Sotoudeh displayed on the facade of the headquarters of the National Council of the Bars of France, Paris, March 28, 2019. REUTERS / Charles Platiau)
The prominent Iranian lawyer, newly appointed citizen of honor of the City of Paris, is currently serving a sentence of thirty-eight years in prison. She is also sentenced to 148 lashes for “contempt of court”.Over time, Nasrin Sotoudeh has emerged as the face of the struggle for human rights in a country where they are often flouted. A petition seeking his release has collected nearly 300,000 signatures.
” A beating “, ” a model of obstinacy “, ” a symbol of resilience “. At the mention of Nasrin Sotoudeh, one only gets praise and flattering formulations. It must be said that through her battles, at the head of which are the fight against the compulsory wearing of the hijab and the defense of political opponents, the Iranian lawyer has built a solid reputation in her country. Its notoriety was quick to cross the borders of the Islamic Republic: the jurist has become a standard bearer of the struggle for human rights in the eyes of the international community. Witness the reward that was awarded on April 1: the honorary citizenship of the City of Paris. The Paris Council believes that ” its struggles bring it closer to the values of the capital “.
Her activism, however, led her to multiple stays in prison. Since June 2018, she has been imprisoned in a prison in Evin, north of Tehran. A petition , launched by the National Council of Bars of France , calling on Iran to release it, has collected nearly 300,000 signatures to date. A request reiterated by Emmanuel Macron during his meeting with President Rohani Tuesday, April 9.
The strong character of the 55-year-old lawyer arises from her youth. Nasrin Sotoudeh comes from a traditional family, as is plethora of Iran in the 1960s. If her mother wore the veil, neither she nor her husband made it an imperative for their daughter Nasrin. ” If I had to put it on, I would have refused, ” she said simply to Sara Saidi, correspondent for the daily Libération in Tehran between 2016 and January 2019, in an interview. And the journalist to clarify: ” This is the proof of a certain strength of conviction .”