Iran Orders 99 Lashes For Woman Facing Execution, Rights Group Says

An Iranian woman who'd already been condemned to death faces another sentence of 99 lashes because of a case of mistaken identity in a photograph, according to foes of the execution. Iranian authorities imposed the sentence after they saw the photo of a woman without a head scarf in a newspaper, the International Committee Against Stoning, a human rights group, said Friday. In an apology, The Times of London, which ran the photo on its front page on August 28, said the woman was wrongly identified as Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, who had previously been sentenced to death by stoning for adultery. The Times said the photo actually is of Susan Hejrat, a political activist living in Sweden. Iranian law requies all women, regardless of their faith, to wear garments that cover their hair and bodies. According to the Times, one of Ashtiani's former lawyers, Mohammed Mostafaei, gave the paper the photo. Mostafaei told CNN Saturday that he still thinks the photo may be of his former client. The Times said Mostafei told it that Ashtiani's son, Sajjad, 22, had e-mailed him two photographs three months ago and told him both were of his mother. "One was the widely used picture of Ms. Ashtiani with her face obscured by a chador [cloak], and the other was the one used by The Times ... That showed the full face of a woman," The Times said in a statement Friday. Sajjad Ghaderzadeh wrote in an open letter that another lawyer sent the paper an authentic photo of his mother, but that it did not appear in the Times article. The letter was circulated by the International Committee Against Stoning on Friday. "We do not know how that picture was originally obtained, nor to whom the picture belongs," Ghaderzadeh said in the letter.