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Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

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Iran Calls French First Lady a Prostitute

August 30, 2010 - 1:22 PM | by: Amy Kellogg

Iranian state media called France’s first lady a “prostitute” on Monday for her support of an Iranian woman who faced death by stoning for adultery.

After Carla Bruni-Sarkozy and other French personalities wrote an open letter, appealing to the Iranian regime to spare Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, the 43-year-old mother of two, and decrying the punishment of stoning, Iran’s hardline newspaper Kayhan lashed out with the headline, “French Prostitutes Also Entered the Human Rights Cry.”

The French have been outspoken about the case of Ashtiani with President Nicholas Sarkozy saying “the Iranian regime exercises control by repression and resorts massively to capital punishment, including in its most medieval form, stoning, with which Mrs. Mohammadi-Ashtiani is threatened.”

This comes amid growing global protest of Iran’s handling of Ashtiani’s case.  Iran suspended the stoning sentence after international outcry, but she could still face execution by hanging.

On Saturday, there were 113 demonstrations worldwide in support of  Ashtiani.

The International Committee Against Stoning is campaigning to save Ashtiani’s life, but also to get the practice of stoning abolished worldwide.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman has said the verdict in Ashtiani’s case has been stayed, and it’s currently under review.  Human rights groups worry that even if the stoning sentence is rescinded, Ashtiani could still possibly be hanged.

A representative of the International Committee Against Stoning tells Fox News that word leaked out of prison that Ashtiani had been told Saturday that she would be executed on Sunday.  And that no one has heard from her since Friday, when her son was able to speak to her on the phone.

Also human rights groups say the office of the lawyer in Iran who is representing Ashtiani has been ransacked, and her son has been told that her files are missing.

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