Iranian Woman of Acid Attack Pardons Attacker at Last Minute

Iranian Victim of Acid Bahrami

It sounds like a typical love story full of suspense, regret and bitter encounter and in most cases sweet ending. Few hours to the commencement of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan fasting and just a few minutes to injection of acid into the eyes of her attacker in hospital, an Iranian woman closed the chapter of a thrilling encounter with her former boyfriend who had attacked her with acid because she refused to marry him.

The Iranian woman, Ameneh Bahrami was only blinded but disfigured by the man, Majid Movahedi who threw acid into her face some years ago.

In strict Iranian law fashioned after the Sharia or Islamic judicial system, a victim has a right to ask for the revenge equivalent to the attack. The woman had asked for the revenge and the judges granted her request. In the trial of Bahrami’s attacker, the court ruling in November 2008 allowed the woman to have a doctor pour a few drops of the corrosive chemical in one of Movahedi’s eyes as retribution. It is a legal right for victims in Iran to ask for a strict enforcement of Islamic law, under which an attempt is made to reach a settlement with victims or their families. If no agreement is reached, then “qisas,” or eye-for-an-eye retribution, is enforced. Under the Iranian judiciary’s policy of qisas, convicted murderers are sentenced to death.

After the ruling of November 2008, Bahrami said she was happy with the sentence. Adding that she was not doing it out of revenge, but rather so that the suffering she went through is not repeated.

The moment to execute the court order came as the woman was in the hospital where her attacker would be administered the acid on his eyes. But the woman she stood above her attacker in a hospital operating room as a doctor was about to put several drops of acid in one of his eyes in court-ordered retribution. The man waited on his knees weeping.

The doctor asked the 34-year-old woman, whose own face was severely disfigured in the 2004 attack: “What do you want to do now?”

The woman simply responded by saying: “I forgave him, I forgave him.” She asked the doctor to spare him at the last minute in a dramatic scene broadcast on Iran’s state television.

The woman continued: “It is best to pardon when you are in a position of power,” Bahrami said, explaining that she did not want revenge.

The sobbing attacker at that moment, Majid Movahedi, said Bahrami was very generous. He added that: “I couldn’t imagine being blinded by acid.”

In other countries including Nigeria the attacker could have escaped or disappeared with connivance of powerful backers like case of mass murders.  Would the blind woman now concede to the request of her former boyfriend by marring him? time will tell. I call this Ramadan love-gift


About the author

Yushau Shuaib