Mahsa is 17. She falls in love with a boy and intends to marry him, but her father is against the marriage. One day she has an argument with her father, and she and her mother decide to kill the father. Mahsa kills her father with a kitchen knife, and now her brothers are requesting death penalty or lex talionis for her and her mother. Mahsa’s brothers agreed she would not be hanged. She is doing her term now.
In Iran, death penalty is given to the children for the crimes such as murder, drug trafficking, and armed robbery. According to the Islamic Penal Law, the age when girls are held accountable for their crimes is 9 years old, while the international conventions have banned the death penalty for individuals under 18.
Pursuant to the passing of new laws in the recent years, the Iranian Judiciary System detains children in Juvenile Delinquents Correction Centre after their verdict. Those with minor crimes are freed after spending their term and those who are sentenced to death are hanged after reaching 18 if the next of kin (private complainants) do not take back their complaints.
At the time of the shooting, some girls were waiting for their execution. However, some of the next of kin (private complainants) withdrew their complaints and some of the girls were freed. They are living their normal life now. And this project still continues. [
The clergyman goes to the Correction Centre, the ward for girls under 18, every day for the congregational prayer. After prayers, he talks about the correct upbringing methods for girls and prays to God to forgive them.
The girls wait for long hours in the queue for food.
Hasrat is 17. She is in prison on charges of stealing sheep and pigeons, bag snatching, and stealing at home. She did them with her boyfriend
Mahsa regrets killing her father and says, “I wish I hadn’t killed my father. I wish I’d listened to my father and hadn’t become friends with that boy.”
Nazanin is 16. She was arrested about 6 months ago for the possession of 651 grams of cocaine.
Shaqayeq, 15, has been in prison for almost 7 months on charge of armed robbery of a car. One night the police notice them. Her boyfriend gets away and Shaqayeq is arrested. Her grandmother has come to visit her after a few months.
Women inmates can keep their new-borns with them in prison until they are 2 years old. Zahra has married in 14 and has two children. She is 17 now and she is in jail on charge of stealing mobile phones. She has been in prison on charge of theft for 3 times.
Every day, one of the girls is in charge of cleaning
Sanaz is 17. She and her boyfriend extorted money with cold and warm weapons. They took taxi drivers out of the city and extorted all their money and savings. They used warm weapons a few times and wounded some drivers.
The girls come to the prison yard for one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening.
Khatereh looks at her arm and wonders if her wound will heal some day.
Sowgand is 16. When she was alone at home, the officers entered their house with a search warrant, and found 250 kg of opium and 30 grams of cocaine. The narcotics belonged to her father, but as only Sowgand was at home when the officers arrived, she was arrested, and to protect her father against going to prison, she confessed the narcotics were hers.
Mahshid is 15. She is in jail on charge of illegitimate affair and carrying narcotics. Her parents are in prison too on charge of possessing and using narcotics. Mahshid will be released after serving her 8-month term.
Khatereh is 13. She was sexually abused by her uncle, so she decided to run away from home. One week later, a few youths attacked her in a park in Tehran to gang rape her. To save herself, she wounded her arm with a knife. The police officers found her unconscious on the ground. And after treatment, she was transferred to Juvenile Delinquents Correction Centre. She will be released in 2 months and return home.