Iran: Police arrest 29 women for removing headscarf, protesting against dress code

  • Iran: Police arrest 29 women for removing headscarf, protesting against dress code

Iran: Police arrest 29 women for removing headscarf, protesting against dress code

Iran police on Friday arrested at least 29 women for participating in the ongoing protest against a law that makes wearing the hijab (headscarf) compulsory.

"Iranian embassy will spare no efforts to facilitate trade between Tehran and Yerevan", Kazem Sajjadi said at a meeting with Iranian manufacturers and business people in Armenia.

The police claimed the women had been "tricked" into removing their headscarves by a propaganda campaign being conducted by Iranians living overseas. They now await whatever fate the judiciary has in store for them.

Witness accounts and social media videos indicate that more than two dozen women have doffed their scarves in public and waved them on sticks, like flags. Please donate or subscribe to help fund independent journalism for the Iranian Diaspora.

Iran's prosecutor general, Mohammad Jafar Montazeri, described the ongoing protests on hijab ban as "childish", "emotionally charged" and instigated "from outside the country".

By putting their scarfs on a stick, they are protesting against arrest, suppression, and their violated rights, Alinejad said in an interview with Radio Farda.

"It's evident by the fact that the morality police are on constant patrol of the streets of major cities like Tehran", Dagnes said.

Holly Dagnes, an Iranian-American analyst told Al Jazeera that authorities in the country are "very much aware" of public disdain for hijab laws.

Masih Alinejad, an exiled Iranian activist and now resides in the United States, started a social media campaign against the compulsory hijab law.

The Iranian government has faced amplified criticism recently, with citizens taking to the streets en masse last month in public protest of the country's stagnant economy, rising fuel and food prices, and corruption. "We imposed restrictions on women and put them under unnecessary restrains".

Police in Iran seemed to take an indirect shot at Alinejad's campaign on Thursday, saying the 29 arrested women were "tricked" into removing their hijabs by a propaganda campaign spread by Iranians living overseas, the private news agency Tasnim reported.