Though sentenced to death six months ago, Afsaneh Noruzi, 32, has only recently been served with the notice of her punishment.

The Tehran-based Shargh daily reported that Noruzi , being held in a jail in the southern port city of Bandar-Abbas, signed and fingerprinted her death order on 28 September.

Noruzi was ordered to die by a court on 15 March for stabbing to death a high-ranking officer on the Gulf island of Kish in 1997.

She claimed the officer had tried to rape her in his office.

Her death sentence was confirmed by the supreme court.

Noruzi's 15-year-old daughter had appealed to the chief justice to review her mother's case.

Three female deputies also appealed to have the case transferred to a new judge.

The deputies said that by killing her aggressor, Noruzi was only "doing her Islamic and human duty to defend her honour as a Muslim woman."