Iranian daily now calls for Bruni to be 'stoned'
Hardline Iranian newspaper Kayhan stepped up its attack on French first lady Carla Bruni, saying today the "Italian prostitute" deserved to die for supporting an Iranian woman sentenced to death by stoning. "This Italian prostitute's indignation at Kayhan's report came while she has had illegitimate relationships with different people before and after marrying (French President Nicolas) Sarkozy," Kayhan said.
Defending Mohammadi-Ashtiani in an open letter, Bruni vowed that France and her husband would not abandon her. She criticised the stoning sentence against Mohammadi-Ashtiani saying: "Spill your blood, deprive your children of their mother? Why? Because you have lived, because you have loved, because you are a woman, an Iranian? Every part of me refuses to accept this."
Human rights officials in the Iranian judiciary say Mohammadi-Ashtiani was sentenced to death by stoning for adultery in a case which also got her a 10-year jail term for participating in her husband's murder. Iran says it has yet to take a final decision on her stoning sentence.
Image: Carla Bruni
Photographs: Olivier Laban-Mattei/Reuters
Insults are unacceptable, says France
Reacting to an Iranian publication insulting first lady Carla Bruni France said today that insults were unacceptable.
"The insults in the daily Kayhan against Mrs Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, are unacceptable," foreign ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said.
The Iranian press reacted after Bruni, the wife of France's President Nicolas Sarkozy, made a public statement in support of an Iranian woman, Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, whom an Iranian court has convicted of adultery and complicity in her husband's murder and sentenced to death.
Image: Carla Bruni models a Vivienne Westwood creation
The Iranian press lashed out at Bruni
The case has triggered an international outcry, and the French government had threatened sanctions. But it was Bruni-Sarkozy's intervention that caused the biggest stir in Tehran, with the conservative Iranian press lashing out at the 41-year-old supermodel-turned-singer's formerly colourful private life.
The publication said "Reviewing Carla Bruni's record clearly shows why this immoral woman has supported an Iranian woman who has committed adultery, has contributed to the murdering of her husband and has been sentenced to death. In fact, she herself deserves death."
Image: Protestors demonstrate against the death-by-stoning sentence of Iranian woman Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani in Paris
Iran slams media for 'insulting comments'
Iran's foreign ministry criticised its media for branding French first lady Carla Bruni as "prostitute".
"Insulting officials of other countries and using indecent words are not endorsed by the Islamic Republic of Iran," ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said. "We don't think using indecent and insulting words is a right move," he said when asked to comment on Iranian media reports that described Bruni as an "immoral" woman and a "prostitute."
"I hope the media will pay attention. The media can criticise the hostile policies of other countries, but by refraining from using insulting words. This is not correct," he said.
Kayhan, whose managing director and chief editor is appointed by Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has launched a vitriolic attack on Bruni since Saturday. The newspaper made a blistering assault on the wife of Sarkozy by branding her a "prostitute" in its Saturday story headlined 'French prostitutes enter the human rights uproar.'
Image: Carla Bruni-Sarkozy at the Elysee Palace in Paris
Photographs: Philippe Wojazer/Reuters