AFP
Last updated: October 19, 2011

Iran woman seeks 2 million euros to spare acid attacker

It will cost an Iranian man convicted of throwing acid in the face of a fellow student two million euros to escape a court-ordered blinding, the Arman newspaper quoted his victim as saying on Tuesday.

"I announced that I want two million euros to guarantee my life and my future, and not for treatment," Ameneh Bahrami told the paper.

"It is only then that I will give up qesas (retributive justice) against Majid, although they said -- and I hope it is true -- that the sentence will be carried out next week," she added.

Majid Movahedi was sentenced to be blinded in both eyes in February 2009, after being convicted of hurling acid in the face of university classmate Bahrami when she repeatedly spurned his offer of marriage.

The court-ordered blinding of Movahedi was postponed at the 11th hour on Saturday. No official reason was given.

Bahrami -- the driving force behind the sentence -- had travelled to the Iranian capital from Spain where she now lives in the expectation of it being carried out. She even said she was ready to do the blinding herself.

Amnesty International had called on Friday for a stay of the sentence, which it described as "a cruel and inhuman punishment amounting to torture".

The Islamic sharia code in force in Iran provides for eye-for-an-eye-style retributive justice, most commonly for murder or those convicted of causing intentional physical injury.

Bahrami -- who was 24 when she met Movahedi in 2002 -- has been undergoing medical treatment for her disfigurement for years in Spain. She is blind in both eyes and still has serious injuries to her face and body.

A number of acid attacks have been reported in Iran in recent years and the press has been generally supportive of Bahrami, publishing sympathetic interviews with her, and photographs of her face before and after the attack.

In December 2010, Iran's supreme court upheld another sentence to blinding handed down against a man convicted of an acid attack against his wife's lover that deprived him of his sight. There has been no reported confirmation of it ever being carried out.

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