Iran’s hardline judiciary admitted it had made an administrative error by summoning Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi to a national security court, and said there was no danger she would be arrested.
“The prosecutor reviewed the case when he learned it concerned Ebadi, and found some mistakes had been made,” judiciary spokesman Jamal Karimi-Rad told reporters.
He explained that the clerk who wrote the summons “was not experienced enough”, and had failed to state the reason for the summons and had also mistakenly called Ebadi to a Revolutionary Court — a tribunal that normally handles political or national security crimes.
The case, he explained, concerned a private complaint of “insult”. The spokesman also stressed this was also “pardonable”.
“The prosecution would like to see the plaintiff. He has not been found yet,” Karimi-Rad said.
“It is a public case so should go to a public court, and not a Revolutionary Court. It is not a political or security case. There is no infringement, oppression or threat.”
Ebadi, awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2003, had been ordered to appear before the court to “provide some explanations” on her activities by Sunday or else be arrested.
She branded the summons illegal and refused to go to court as long as the charges against her were unspecified. Karimi-Rad confirmed that given the summons did not contain a reason for the court appearance, it was therefore “illegal”.